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Posts Tagged ‘Public health’

Covid-19 in India: Modi the Magician?

In India on 26/05/2020 at 4:36 am

India’s sudden shutdown threw an estimated 140m out of work. It has also blocked “coping mechanisms” for dealing with adversity (eg, help from relatives or remittances from overseas) which depend on calamity not striking everyone at once.

Recognising the pain, Narendra Modi, the prime minister, on May 12th pledged an almost mythical-sounding 20 lakh crore rupees of fresh government spending, equivalent to $265bn or 10% of gdp, to reignite growth. Over the next five days a bank of finance-ministry officials faced cameras, unveiling slice after slice of measures, carefully designed to add up to Mr Modi’s magic number.

Yet although analysts expect the extra spending to push the budget deficits of the central government and the states to about 12% of gdp, and raise the country’s overall debt-to-gdp ratio to a wobbly 80%, many doubt that the measures will work. “What we needed was large tranches of money to go into circulation without ado,” said an editorial in Mint, a financial daily. But instead of a demand-side boost, and in particular urgent cash support for the poorest, what Mr Modi delivered was a hotchpotch of supply-side inducements and prods such as credit guarantees, along with reforms whose impact will only be felt in the medium term, at the earliest. Most of the stimulus was made up either of previously announced measures, or central bank moves to spur lending. Estimates of the actual new fiscal commitment by Mr Modi’s government range from a puny 0.7% of gdp to 1.3%, a far cry from the touted 10%.

https://www.economist.com/asia/2020/05/23/indias-economy-has-suffered-even-more-than-most

Covid-19: India’s virus is the deadliest?

In India on 25/05/2020 at 5:53 am

[The] Indian virus looks more lethal than Chinese and Italian now.

Nepal’s PM

He’s no friend of India, what with a border row. But going by the data, he has a point. Despite 61 days (and still counting of a very severe lockdown), India registered about  6,745 new coronavirus cases over the past 24 hours (as of yesterday evening), its third consecutive day of a rise in new infections

The country of 1.3 billion people reported a total of over 131,900 confirmed. Included in the total are 3,870 deaths.

Even the US figures are starting to trend down.

Covid-19: Ang moh tua kees, cybernuts go bang yr balls

In Public Administration on 14/05/2020 at 4:53 am

Ang mohs think we handling Covid-19 crisis pretty well.

Ang moh tua kees (and anti-PAP types) like Kirsten Han and that quitter in Finland (there because he can only afford a neighbourhood school education here for his kids) who KPKB about the PAP govt’s response to the pandemic should ask themselves why the ang mohs in Oz admire our response to Covid-19?

I won’t bother asking anti-PAP types to reflect as they are sotong.

Schematic on how Covid-19 affects the body explains why infected Indian dorm workers are still alive

In Uncategorized on 11/05/2020 at 6:02 am

No wonder it kills us fatties with chronic diseases while fit and trim Indian and Bangladeshi workers living in cramped and often unhygienic conditions who catch Covid-19 don’t die of it: Covid-19: Reason why no Indian or Bangladeshi worker has died?

The body’s systems go into overdrive when fighting Covid-19. This causes real problems for us effete elderly fatties. The bodies of the Indian and Bangladeshi workers just shrug off the side-effects that do us effete elderly fatties serious damage.

Note:

In late April, It was reported that a dorm worker that had caught Covid-19 was found dead. Police are investigating.

A Bangladeshi, Case 17410, was confirmed to have COVID-19 after his death on May 1 but the Ministry of Health said the cause of his death was ischaemic heart disease.

Activists say that there are four or five other deaths and say that there’s a cover-up. But these activists (especially white skin lover Kirsten Han) are juz as credible as Queen Jos the manpower minister when she refuses to admit that she and her ministry made “an honest mistake”.

Covid-19: Ethnic Indians, Pakistanis and Bangladeshis got higher death rates in UK

In Uncategorized on 09/05/2020 at 4:57 am

Ethnic Chinese don’t die as much. Blacks die like flies, relatively speaking.

For British Bangladeshi and Pakistanis, the mortality rate is more than three times higher. For British Indians the mortality rate is more than two times higher.

Scientists are trying to figure out why ethnic minorities have higher death rates than the whites.

But then in S’pore, Indian and Bangladeshi workers catch the virus but don’t seem to die: Covid-19: Reason why no Indian or Bangladeshi worker has died?

Note:

In late April, It was reported that a dorm worker that had caught Covid-19 was found dead. Police are investigating.

A Bangladeshi, Case 17410, was confirmed to have COVID-19 after his death on May 1 but the Ministry of Health said the cause of his death was ischaemic heart disease.

Would the dorm workers prefer to be repatriated to India and Bangladesh?

In Economy, Public Administration on 27/04/2020 at 10:16 am

Khaw’s got a point.

Something that a very disgruntled Quitter living in Finland (kids get free education there, can only get into neighbourhood “good” schools here and he can’t afford int’l school fees here); ang moh tua kees like Kirsten Han; anti-PAP activists and cybernuts; and frustrated wannabe Sith Lords (now trying to reinvent themselves as Jedi) like ex-ST tua kee Bertha Henson forget when criticising the PAP’s govt’s less than diligent efforts (F9, downright careless in my view) in looking after the welfare of our FT workers living in dorms.

Foreign workers in Singapore know they are currently safer in the city-state than elsewhere including their own countries, a minister said, even as a massive coronavirus outbreak among that community shines a spotlight on cramped and oft-unsanitary lodging provided for the low-wage employees.

The workers from overseas are “appreciative” of efforts that range from relieving overcrowding in current facilities, and measures to provide them with medical attention, food and remittance services, Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan said in a Facebook post on Sunday. Singapore is speeding up construction of additional dormitories, he said.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-04-19/foreign-workers-safer-in-singapore-than-elsewhere-minister-says

Most (over 80%) of the almost 14,000 cases are work permit holders residing in dormitories. None has died of Covid-19, although one of dorm resident with Covid-19 was found dead: police are investigating.

Related post: Covid-19: Reason why no Indian or Bangladeshi worker has died?

India or Bangladesh got anything like this meh? https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/covid-19-behind-the-scenes-at-the-changi-exhibition-centre-12677966

Yes our millionaire ministers screwed up badly by ignoring these FT workers, and we S’poreans are paying the price for their incompetence. But things are being rectified ASAP.

Related posts:

Why even with 4G donkeys, PAP will retain power

Is there really a better alternative to PAP 4G?

Run in France on tobacco products because of “evidence” smokers less likely to catch Covid-19

In Uncategorized on 26/04/2020 at 4:25 am

This is not fake news propogated by Big Tobacco.

[S]mokers were less numerous among hospitalised Covid-19 patients than in the general population,preliminary findings from a Paris hospital nicotine competes with the virus for access to receptors in the lungs and so protects smokers

BBC

Last week, data from a Paris hospital indicated that smokers were statistically less likely to be admitted for treatment for Covid-19: researchers noticed the low number of smokers among those hospitalised with Covid-19. The theory that nicotine could play a role in blocking the virus is due to be tested at a hospital in Paris, using nicotine patches.

The government’s chief health official said the study was interesting but warned that smokers who did become infected with coronavirus tended to have more serious symptoms. He also warned that smoking killed 75,000 people a year in France.

There was a run on nicotine products. France has now banned the online sale of nicotine products and limited their sale in pharmacies, after researchers suggested that nicotine may play a role in protecting against coronavirus.

The new rules cover products like nicotine gum and patches, designed to help people stop smoking.

People will only be allowed to buy one month’s supply of these products.

The aim is to stop people putting too much nicotine into their bodies, in the hope of protecting themselves against coronavirus, and also to protect the supply for people who need it, says the .

BBC’s Lucy Williamson in Paris

Btw, unrelated to the above, South Africa has unbanned cigarette sales. Alcohol sales remain banned under its lockdown

Point of lockdown: any lockdown

In Public Administration on 25/04/2020 at 1:55 pm

To buy time to prepare to contain future outbreaks.

Governments all over the world from India to states in the US to China and the UK have all imposed lockdowns.

The point of the lockdown was to accept short-term economic pain as the price of getting the virus under control.

Economist

But once the country brings its infection rate down, can they box in future outbreaks?

Only if the government had used the lockdown to prepare

itself—through widespread testing, an army of contact-tracers and infrastructure to support extended isolation and quarantine—to box in future outbreaks.

Economist

Is the PAP govt here and other givts (for example in India and Malaysia) extending the lockdowns to do this?

What do you think?

Xia suay! Tan Kin Lian has valid point

In Public Administration on 24/04/2020 at 5:23 am

He not always Talk Cock, Sing Song King. I also wonder why the 4G leaders were not looking at the non-dom data only, as we can effectively lock up the dom workers: OK, OK it’s not a PC correct view.

My further tots after TKL’s piece

Bad judgment by ministerial task force

The ministerial task force made a bad judgment. In early April, they panicked and decided to introduce the circuit breaker. They closed down most workplaces (except for the essential ones), food outlets and schools and ordered the people to stay at home for four weeks.

Why was this a bad judgment?

The ministers panicked when they saw the large increase in new cases. The did not realize that this increase was due to the increased testing of the workers living in the dormitories which occurred as part of the contact tracing protocol. As more people are tested, more cases would certainly be detected.

There was no evidence of a large increase in the wider community. If there was an increase, it was small and manageable.

In such a situation, the ministers should just ask for the foreign workers to stop work and stay in the dormitories until they are tested. There is no need to lockdown the entire country.

They could have focused their attention on the real risk, rather than dissipate their resources over locking down the entire country.

The lockdown (or “circuit breaker” that is officially termed) has cost the country over $40 billion in the relief packages. This does not include the real losses suffered by businesses and households. Many families saw their income wiped out by the lockdown measures, and do not receive adequate compensation.

Several hundred thousand families and families were badly affected. The damage to their livelihood is horrendous. It will take several months for the damage to be repaired, even after the lockdown is lifted.

The $40 billion spent on the relief packages could have been used to waive GST for four years. That would have reduce the cost of living for the people. That would have been a better use of the money.

All of these economic harm could have been avoided, if the ministers had made the right judgement.

They should have ordered the workers living in the dormitories to stop work and isolate them from the community until they are tested to be “suitable to work”.

They can monitor the actual spread in the wider community, excluding the cases from the dormitories, to see if a lockdown is necessary.

They could have followed the approach that is successfully adopted in several countries, such as Taiwan, South Korea and Vietnam. These countries strengthen their social distancing measures. They asked their people to wear masks and to keep a safe distance from other people. Some closed schools but some did not.

These countries did not implement a lockdown. They managed to contain the spread of the virus and keep a low death rate.

We should have tried this approach first, before ordering a costly lockdown that had a bad impact on the economy and that may really be unnecessary.

The statistics from the World Health Organization showed that the death rate from the covid-19 is 2 per million in Singapore. It is 128 per million in America and higher in several countries in Europe.

The risk from the covid-19 is clearly much lower in Singapore than in other countries. If our death rate is 50 per million, it would be justified for the ministers to panic and lockdown the country. But it is poor judgement and and hasty for the ministers to introduce a lockdown when the death rate was only 2 per million.

To prepare for the possibility that the situation could get worse and a possible increase in the death rate, the ministers could have taken the following contingency measures:

a) Increase our capacity to treat more severely ill patients. This means more hospital beds, ventilators and hospital doctors and nurses. We can follow other countries in how they expand the capacity quickly.

b) Increase the isolation facilities to quarantine people for 14 or 21 days. These facilities can be set up quickly and do not need a high standard of medical equipment.

c) Arrange to take care of the elderly sick people who live alone and in nursing homes. We can get specially screened care givers to take care of their needs and severely reduce their exposure to the wider community

d) Conduct the covid test on all healthcare workers. This is to protect the health of the hospital workers and the patients. The results of the test can be used to estimate the community spread of the virus, as these workers can be treated as a representative sample of the population. This information is critical for planning the containment measures to be used in the future.

I believe that the first two measures have already been taken by the government. I suggest that they act on the third and fourth measures immediately.

I now come to the next test. Will the ministers extend the circuit breaker for another few weeks, beyond May 4?

It would be unwise and unnecessary to extend the circuit breaker. It would cause greater damage to the livelihoods of the hundreds of thousand of people that have been badly affected now. The damage will extend further and affect to the population at large.

I hope that the ministerial task force will review the situation and take the right decision going forward.


Unlike TKL, I don’t think the 4G leaders panicked. I suspect something about the data scared the hell out of them after their advisers interpreted the data for them.

Maybe asymptomatic cases could be a lot more prevalent?

Or hospital facilities maybe will be overstretched if there’s no lockdown? Remember even if non-dom cases are peanuts, cases grow exponentially. Combine that with the cases among the locked down FTs and “PM, we have a problem.”

Only time will tell if Tan Kin Lian is talking cock on the topic.

Related posts:

Why even with 4G donkeys, PAP will retain power

Is there really a better alternative to PAP 4G?

Covid-19: Reason why no Indian or Bangladeshi worker has died?

In Uncategorized on 23/04/2020 at 4:27 am

(Update on 24 April at 4,30am: After publication, it was reported that a dorm worker that had caught Covid-19 was found dead. Police are investigating.)

The number of COVID-19 cases in Singapore has crossed 10,000, with 1,016 cases announced on Wednesday. Most of the cases (about 80% according to the BBC) are work permit holders residing in dormitories.

Low-wage foreign workers comprise a fifth of the overall population in Singapore, but largely live separate from the local community. The dormitories — where clogged toilets and overflowing rubbish chutes have been reported — are a far cry from the country’s glitzy skyline showcased in Hollywood blockbusters like “Crazy Rich Asians.”

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-04-21/how-singapore-flipped-from-virus-hero-to-cautionary-tale

And another person has died, bringing the total to 12. But there have been no deaths (touch wood) among the dormitory workers.

One reason is that they are young: I think (I stand corrected) that all the 12 people who died here are not young.

Here’s another possible reason why the workers are not dying despite catching the Covid-19 while living in cramped, crowded conditions: they are not overweight. Have you seen an overweight FT manual worker?

The UK’s Sunday Telegraph reports on research about who is at greater risk of being admitted to hospital with a severe form of the virus. The paper says a study into British patients suggests being overweight is one of the most important risk factors.

The yet to be peer-reviewed is based on an analysis of more than 15,000 cases and is said to be the biggest study of its kind.

Btw,

Covid-19 only emerged at the end of 2019, but already there are signs it may take a long time for some patients to get back to full health.

Recovery time will depend on how sick you become in the first place. Some people will shrug off the illness fast, but for others it could leave lasting problems.

Age, gender and other health issues all increase the risk of becoming more seriously ill from Covid-19.

The more invasive the treatment you receive, and the longer it is performed, the longer recovery is likely to take.

https://www.bbc.com/news/health-52301633

Minister Chan, who is the xia suay?

In Hong Kong, Public Administration on 21/04/2020 at 4:22 am

PAP govt or HK’s govt?

Remember Chan Kee Chiu made fun of HK’s clueless CEO for wearing a mask in public?

Well, Hong Kong reported the first day of zero infections in almost two months on Monday.

But,

Singapore reported a daily high of 1,426 new COVID-19 cases on Monday (Apr 20), bringing the national total to 8,014. 

The “vast majority” of the new cases are work permit holders living in foreign worker dormitories, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said in its media release of preliminary figures. 

Sixteen new cases are Singaporeans or permanent residents. 

Singapore is now the worst-hit country in Southeast Asia, surpassing figures in Indonesia and the Philippines.

https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/covid-19-new-cases-1426-foreign-workers-dormitory-citizen-pr-moh-12658250

Btw, Vietnam reported no new Covid-19 cases on Monday for the fourth day running, raising hopes that the worst of the outbreak there may have passed.

But the PAP govt is really lucky. The people most vocal in KPKBing about its efforts are cybernuts Mad Dog, Lim Tean, Meng Seng. One P (olitician) Ravi is joining them.

He’s trying hard to be a MP candidate for Tan Cheng Bock’s party. Someone should advise him to sit down and shut up. He shouldn’t talk cock like Lim Tean and Mad Dog. Dr Tan is not pleased Moley (Secret Squirrel’s sidekick) tells me.

Related post: Why even with 4G donkeys, PAP will retain power

S’poreans don’t trust Ah Loong’s govt isit?

In Political governance, Public Administration on 20/04/2020 at 10:51 am

Economist writes:

Contact tracing helps to direct testing more precisely at those likely to be infected. Using apps helps speed this up.

But only, though, if phone users are willing to adopt the app.

It goes on to cite S’pore’s example as a place where people are not downloading an app.

Here, Singapore’s experience is salutary. Its government rolled out a contact-tracing app, TraceTogether, on March 20th. So far, however, this has been downloaded by only a sixth of Singapore’s population—barely a quarter of the 60% epidemiologists reckon is needed if it is to be effective at breaking the local epidemic.

https://www.economist.com/science-and-technology/2020/04/16/app-based-contact-tracing-may-help-countries-get-out-of-lockdown

And this despite our app being praised by ang moh human rights activists.

Singapore’s TraceTogether, which has been praised by privacy experts for collecting a bare minimum of data, could provide a template for ang moh apps concerned about privacy. Rather than constantly tracking people, it uses Bluetooth to record the proximity to other app users so that they can be alerted if any app user later test positive for the virus.

BBC technology correspondent

Jeni Tennison of the Open Data Institute:

“[C]urrently, there’s very little transparency about what kind of design is being considered and implemented by the [UK]government.”

She goes on

[T]here are examples out there of good practice. She cites Singapore, which she says generally has a reputation for excessive surveillance of its citizens, but has developed an app which captures the bare minimum of data.

“So every time that you meet somebody with your phone, and they have the same app on their phone, it records the fact that you have met, but it doesn’t record anything about where you are or who those other people are. It’s only there so that if you catch the disease, those people that you have come into contact with or been close to you can get notified about that fact.”

Kirsten Han has unfriended all these ang mohs who show the lies she tells about the PAP govt.

Covid-19: Banning citizens from returning

In Uncategorized on 19/04/2020 at 11:12 am

India is one of the few countries in the world that has barred its own citizens from returning. Juz saying as there are cybnernuts condemning the govt for allowing citizens and some long-term residents from returning.

Whatever may the American (must be a Trumpter) that returned here and infected many others by irresponsible partying must be deported. Juz saying.

Social distancing the Chinese way

In Uncategorized on 18/04/2020 at 4:48 am

The ang moh way

UK street party obeying social distancing guidelines

In Uncategorized on 15/04/2020 at 4:39 am

Police in Hull, in England, allowed a street party to continue because everyone was following social distancing guidelines. Pictures from the scene show residents enjoying a drink in their front gardens while the man who organised the party played dance music from turntables outside his home.

The people are at least two meters apart: Covid-19: Social distance illustrated.

Can only happen in the UK.

Anywhere else, the police will close down the party as an illegal assembly even if social distancing is practiced: guns a’blazing in the US or lathis swinging in India or throwing tear gas canisters in France.

Antidote to Covid-19 and market stress

In Financial competency, Financial planning, Media on 09/04/2020 at 4:44 am

The BBC (among others) recommend that to lessen the stress of Covid-19

— Limit the amount of time you spend reading or watching things which aren’t making you feel better.
— Be careful what you read

Hmm.

Until very recently, markets were tanking as if there were tomorrow. Maybe in such a situation, stop following the market.

Btw, markets are on a roll. Most say it’s a bear market rally. But hope springs eternal.

South Korea’s and S’pore healthcare systems compared

In Public Administration, Uncategorized on 08/04/2020 at 5:07 am

S Korea is often held up to be the gold standard in the fight against Covid-19. If so, contrary to what Lim Tean, Goh Meng Seng, Mad Dog and anti-PAP alt media say, the PAP govt’s management of our heathcare system is world class in general , and in the fight against Covid-19 ((bar the advice on use of masks, now amended: Masterclass ). Remember Korea is a developed country.

S’pore has also on a per capita basis tested more people for Covid-19 than S Korea. I can’t remember where I read this. I’ll cite the source when I find it.

And we do spend $, even if its from our own pocket. But let’s remember that anti-PAP cybernuts say CPF is a tax. If it’s a tax, then this spending on healthcare is public spending, not “Ownself fund ownself”.

Vote wisely.

Masterclass

In Uncategorized on 07/04/2020 at 5:20 am

Yesterday in Constructive advice to Mad Dog and other anti-PAP types, I said I’d post a masterclass in

on how to remind the public that the PAP govt is really xia suay, but which cannot be seen as sniping. In fact, it’s really constructive advice to S’poreans.

Below is a screenshot of what TCB wrote recently, followed by the full text. He tells us to use masks when we go out.

It is a simple but considerate act that protects those next to us. Let’s not look for reasons not to wear a mask in public.

And nowhere in it does he mention that until recently, the PAP govt said that it was xia suay to use masks. But S’poreans know what was until last Friday official govt policy. We even had Kee Chui Chan calling HK’s CEO xia suay for wearing a mask in public.

All Dr Tan says is

The Government also said they will not discourage the wearing of masks.

Full text:

Let’s wear masks

Since PM’s announcement on Friday, many Singaporeans are scrambling to do last minute work preparations visiting workplaces and shopping centers before the closure of schools and non-essential businesses on Wednesday.

The Government also said they will not discourage the wearing of masks.

As a doctor, I would go one step further to encourage, and even insist that everyone should wear a mask when you leave home.

You will be protecting neighbours, colleagues and people around you if you cough and sneeze or if you are an asymptomatic carrier. There is nothing to lose in wearing masks. The number of unlinked local infection cases and new clusters is rising. You will also minimise the risk of catching the virus if a carrier is close to you. The risks are real. CNA reported that on 4 April 2020, there were 75 new cases and 4 new clusters.

So wear a mask when you go out. It is a simple but considerate act that protects those next to us. Let’s not look for reasons not to wear a mask in public.

However, don’t let wearing masks make us complacent. We still need to practice good hygiene habits of hand washing and not touching your face. And most of all, we should Stay At Home. This is the best way to protect yourself.

Remember, you can play your part to stop virus transmission.

I include some of the latest research on the protection that masks provide.
https://www.nature.com/articles/s41591-020-0843-2

Constructive advice to Mad Dog and other anti-PAP types

In Uncategorized on 06/04/2020 at 8:26 am

But first

#SGunited does not mean citizens should just listen and let the political leaders go unquestioned. Whenever someone says the 4G leaders know best, remind them who said face masks were not necessary for the general public two months ago and also those media platforms that regurgitated such narrative without question.

TOC

Well given that TOC’s stance is “PAP is always wrong” above comment is really rich. Sad.

Seriously, I sent the following to the only adult in the SDP’s CEC with a suggestion, he forward it to Mad Dog:

Sir Keir’s best chance of success lies in playing to his strengths as a post-ideological pragmatist. In public he should ask practical questions about the government’s performance in producing ventilators and covid tests or getting economic help to the vulnerable, while avoiding the impression that he’s sniping. 

Economist’s Bagehot

I’m sending the same message via this post to Terry and other anti-PAP activists:

Ask practical questions about the government’s performance in containing the virus or getting economic help to the vulnerable, while avoiding the impression that you are sniping. 

Sadly I doubt, Mad Dog, Terry etc would do this. “PAP is always wrong.”

With enemies like Mad Dog, Lim Tean, Meng Seng, s/o JBJ, Tan Kin Lian, Tan Jee Say and other anti-PAP clowns, the PAP can afford friends like Grace Yeo: Xia suay! “PA group activities dangerous for seniors’ health”.

Tom, I’ll post a masterclass on how to remind the public that the PAP govt is really xia suay, but which cannot be seen as sniping. In fact, it’s really constructive advice to S’poreans.

Covid-19: Tablighi Jamaat does it again

In Uncategorized on 04/04/2020 at 5:03 pm

Pakistan has the most Covid-19 cases in South Asia with 2709 reported cases and 40 deaths. And it’s the fault of Tablighi Jamaat again. (Related post: Covid-19: Must be Tablighi Jamaat again)


Many of these cases were found among members of an Islamic missionary movement called Tablighi Jamaat who had returned after attending the Jamaat’s annual convention in Lahore in mid-March.

The convention was attended by missionaries from all over the Islamic world. It proved to be a catalyst for the spread of virus to many areas in Punjab, in some sectors of the federal capital Islamabad, as well as to other areas like the Palestinian territories.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-52149688?intlink_from_url=https://www.bbc.com/news/world/asia&link_location=live-reporting-story

With an Islamic organisation like Tablighi Jamaat, Muslims doesn’t need to worry about Hindu nationalists, or others who hate Islam and Muslims. With a Muslim organisation like Tablighi Jamaat, Muslims don’t need enemies.

Covid-19: What happens after isolation

In Uncategorized on 04/04/2020 at 10:52 am

So what do you do after lockdown is lifted or you can leave self isolation.

Deep clean the room or flat

“Viruses are actually fairly delicate bits of material, so they don’t survive very long”, Alex Akin, from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, tells Radio 1 Newsbeat.

https://www.bbc.com/news/newsbeat-52019048

Akin says using soapy water or any kind of detergent to wipe down surfaces in the room you’ve been isolating in is enough to kill droplets of any virus.

He emphasised that the areas you should focus most on cleaning are “smooth, flat, smooth plastic or metal surfaces”.

You can throw yr laundry in the wash with other people’s. The normal detergents in a washing machine should easily deal with any amount of virus.”

And if you are ang moh, bathe before going out.

Covid-19: Ang moh tua kees: Swedish and PAP govts behaving in similar manner

In Public Administration, Uncategorized on 03/04/2020 at 7:29 am

Our ang moh tua kees like to compare S’pore unfavourably with the Nordic countries.

Well the Swedish govt is behaving in a similar manner to the PAP govt. Both are trying and succeeding (so far) in their attempts in allowing life to go on much closer to normal, like in keeping schools open.

While swathes of Europe’s population endure lockdown conditions in the face of the coronavirus outbreak, one country stands almost alone in allowing life to go on much closer to normal.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-52076293


Lim Tean and P Ravi should stop playing politics in calling for a shut down of schools.

There are good reasons to try to avoid closing schools: Xia suay! Lim Tean wants to badly damage our healthcare system.

And P Ravi should remember that his party leader, Dt Tan Cheng Bock, has not called for schools to close. Rumour has it that Ravi wants the PSP to nominate him as its candidate in SMC Hong Kah North. In the last GE, he stood there for the Chiams’ party. This call is certainly a black mark against him in any decision to field him. The PSP is not Lim Tean. It’s a responsible party and tries to talk sense, even if at times it gets things wrong.

With enemies like Lim Tean and Ravi, how can the Oppo hope to deny the PAP a two-thirds majority in parliament: Is there really a better alternative to PAP 4G?.

Sad.

Covid-19: Must be Tablighi Jamaat again

In India, Indonesia, Malaysia on 02/04/2020 at 4:22 pm

Tablighi Jamaat, an influential Islamic missionary movement, with its HQ in a New Delhi slum, is now responsible for super-spreading Covid-19 in India after doing it in M’sia and Indonesia: Covid-19 in Islamic countries. In Indonesia and M’sia, it was their mass gatherings that caused serious problems. It also affected S’pore because some of people in the M’sian gathering returned to S’pore.

The Tablighi Jamaat have come into the spotlight after an event they held in the Indian capital Delhi has spawned a number of Covid-19 clusters across the country. But exactly who is this group and why did they hold a big gathering in Delhi? BBC Hindi’s Zubair Ahmed reports.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-52131338

With an irresponsible organisation like Tablighi Jamaat, Muslims have to be afraid, very afraid of being cast as disease carriers in India, M’sia and Inonesia. The people who don’t like Muslims and want to hurt them can only be pleased that Tablighi Jamaat was so socially irresponsible in three countries.

With an organisation like Tablighi Jamaat, Muslims don’t need enemies. Time for Muslims to do some serious soul-searching.

Covid-19: Wishing India well

In India on 01/04/2020 at 1:34 pm

In the western Indian city of Pune, young engineers are trying to develop a low-cost (US$662)”no-frills” breathing machine tailored to Indian conditions. This could save thousands of lives if the Covid-19 pandemic hits India badly.

Story at: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-52106565?fbclid=IwAR30DLlgKH72n_f0VGfDQ9tobP-DY1BPU5XSyWEXOnTC43XwZ9qoTN6DLO8

Let’s wish the young engineers well.

Will we see S’pore Girl working in hospitals?

In Airlines, Public Administration, S'pore Inc on 31/03/2020 at 4:15 am

Or in polyclinics?

In the UK

Thousands of easyJet and Virgin airline staff are being offered work in the new NHS Nightingale Hospital.

Those who sign up will support nurses and senior clinicians at the coronavirus field hospital in east London, the NHS said.

Virgin Atlantic said furloughed staff who help will be paid through the government retention scheme.

NHS England said many airline staff are first aid trained and already have security clearance.

The workers will be changing beds and performing other non-clinical tasks and helping doctors and nurses working on the wards, the NHS said.

https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-london-52085701

Social distance: Go to polyclinic and get infected isit?

In Public Administration on 30/03/2020 at 5:28 am

My friend has an appointment tomorrow for various annual tests and the quarterly visit to see the doctor. And as he’s within the vulnerable group (65, got diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol) he’s worried, of getting Covid-19.

(Btw, I told him that’s the price of being cheapskate, and not going private.)

Last week he went for a lab test and the the social distance markings in queue to get in didn’t look 1m. And the seating arrangements while waiting for the test was definitely not in line with those in pixs of what should be social distancea.

Go to polyclinic and get infected isit?

Safer to eat in food courts or hawker centres, judging by the pixs of social distance, than waiting in polyclinic for appointment isit?

Covid-19: Double confirm, S’pore not in East Asia

In Public Administration on 29/03/2020 at 6:17 am

The BBC reports

Step outside your door without a face mask in Hong Kong, Seoul or Tokyo these days, and you may well get a disapproving look.

https://www.economist.com/graphic-detail/2020/03/27/coronavirus-and-leviathan

In HK

“HEY GWEILO, too poor to buy a mask?” Such handwritten signs around Hong Kong are evidence of growing impatience with foreigners who insist on going out in public without face masks during the coronavirus crisis

Economist

The BBC report goes on

Since the start of the coronavirus outbreak some places have fully embraced wearing face masks, and anyone caught without one risks becoming a social pariah.

But in many other parts of the world, from the UK and the US to Sydney and Singapore, it’s still perfectly acceptable to walk around bare-faced.

The BBC report is very clear that in East Asia, the use of masks is standard operating procedure, bar one country; that ang moh countries don’t follow the practice in East Asian countries; and that S’pore is the exception in East Asia, preferring the Western practice.

Looks like Kirsten Han and other woke S’poreans like Mad Dog, M Ravi ad Lim Tean are not the only ang moh tua kees. The PAP govt is also ang moh tua kee: Xia suay! PRC monkey see, S’porean monkey must do isit?.

Related posts: Fake news that S’poreans panicking about shortage of masks and Kiasu? Get hold of the king mask/ Listen to expert on infectious disease.

I’ve got complaints from pedants that S’pore is in SE Asia, not East Asia. Well 70% of S’poreans are ethnic Chinese, not ethnic SE Asian. Many in the past have called S’pore, the third or fourth China (depending on how HK and Taiwan are defined.

(The last paragraph was added at 3.10pm on day of publication.)

Covid-19: Will Modi be able to outboast Trump?/ Why India will beat the virus: “very good in mission mode”

In India on 28/03/2020 at 6:16 am

No, not when it comes to spending money will Modi be able to outboast: Trump has signed the largest-ever US financial stimulus package, worth $2tn (£1.7tn), as the country grapples with the coronavirus pandemic.

But in being able to boast to Xi and Trump about beating the Chinese virus. When the US had more confirmed cases of thecoronavirus than any other country, with more than 97,000 positive tests, Trump called Xi, “Beat that you commies. America is Great Again.”

Seriously, as the Economist wrote last week:

Fears are rising that the world’s second-most populous country might be on the brink of a big covid-19 outbreak. Until now India has been lucky with this coronavirus. It has relatively few visitors from the early centres of the pandemic—China, Italy and Iran. And Indian governments, at both federal and state levels, have been strikingly forceful in their response to the virus, with public-information campaigns saturating the television airwaves, and recorded messages pushed to mobile phones. So the number of Indian cases so far can be counted in the scores. But India has so far tested only a few thousand people, and some experts think it already has thousands or tens of thousands of cases. If so, decades of under-investment in public health have left India ill-prepared, with not enough doctors, beds or equipment for its 1.3bn people even in ordinary times.

Economist

—————————————————————————————————–

Is the world’s second-most populous country testing enough?: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-51922204


But India, while “not very good at routine stuff”, is “very good in mission mode.” As the BBC reports

A state that largely fails to deliver quality public health and education to its people excels in “mission mode” with deadline-driven, specific targets.

It went door-to-door, and vaccinated more than 170 million children and eradicated polio. It regularly holds trouble-free votes involving hundreds of millions of people – 67% of the 910 million eligible voters cast their ballots in the 2019 general election. An under-developed and crime-ridden state like Uttar Pradesh, with a population of the size of Brazil, regularly hosts the Kumbh Mela, the world’s biggest open air religious gathering of people. It prepared for more then 100 million pilgrims last year, without a single stampede or health scare. It is all very counter-intuitive.

“The Indian state,” says Prof Mehta, “is not very good at routine stuff, but very good in mission mode.” It also helps that Indians, especially faced with a crisis, show unusually high levels of social cohesion and adaptability.

Over the years an increasing number of states have beefed up capacity for delivering welfare schemes and services more efficiently. Kerala has been a shining example for years. But now, even states like Orissa in the east are catching up: it has given 500,000 rupees ($6,626; £5,582) to every village council to build a quarantine centre, in what is seen as exemplary strategic disaster planning.

India’s mission-mode capacities will be now put to the test in more ways than one.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-52043465

Let’s hope Modi will not need to call Xi or Trump to boast about having more victims of the Chinese virus than China or the US of A.

Instead Indian patriots should pray and hope that he’ll be able to call Trump and Xi and say “Pandemic? What pandemic? We handled the Chinese virus better than you guys. India is rising and don’t you forget it.”

In Covid-19 lockdown? Tips to get the mostest from your internet

In Internet on 26/03/2020 at 4:24 am

To keep speeds up, the UK’s media watchdog Ofcom has compiled a list of tips to get the most from your internet. From a BBC article (link below):

‘Don’t use the microwave’

The advice ranges from the seemingly obvious, like downloading films in advance rather than streaming them when someone else may be trying to make a video call, to the less expected.

“Did you know that microwave ovens can also reduce wi-fi signals?”…

“So don’t use the microwave when you’re making video calls, watching HD videos or doing something important online.”

It suggests positioning your internet router as far as possible from other devices that may interfere with the signal.

Those devices include: cordless phones, baby monitors, halogen lamps, dimmer switches, stereos and computer speakers, TVs and monitors.

Ofcom also advises making calls on a landline where possible, citing an increase in the demand on mobile networks.

“If you do need to use your mobile, try using your settings to turn on wi-fi calling,” …

“Similarly, you can make voice calls over the internet using apps like Facetime, Skype or WhatsApp.”

… disconnecting devices that are not in use.

“The more devices attached to your wi-fi, the lower the speed you get,” …

“Devices like tablets and smartphones often work in the background, so try switching wi-fi reception off on these when you’re not using them.”

Other tips include:

— Place your router on a table or shelf rather than on the floor, and keep it switched on

— If you’re carrying out video calls or meetings, turning the video off and using audio will require much less of your internet connection

— Try starting those calls at less common times, rather than on the hour or half hour

— For the best broadband speeds, use an ethernet cable to connect your computer directly to your router rather than using wifi

— Where possible, try not to use a telephone extension lead, as these can cause interference which could lower your speed

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-52027348?intlink_from_url=https://www.bbc.com/news/technology&link_location=live-reporting-story

Covid-19: The truth about the death projections

In Financial competency, India, Media on 25/03/2020 at 11:50 am

No they are not fake news, but the projections are very nuanced and come with caveats, something that social media, new media and the mainstream media don’t communicate properly.

But before going into that something that most reports don’t highlight, did you know that the Spanish flu that killed an estimated 50 million people worldwide should have been named the Indian flu given that some 12-17 million people died in India, about 5% of the population? Only 5-7 million people died in China. And a lot less in Spain.

Sorry for the aside, Coming back to the death projections, I’m sure that you know by know that a key piece of modelling which has informed the British government’s decision to try to suppress the virus was done by Imperial College London.

It suggested 500,000 could die if we do nothing, while the government’s previous strategy to slow the spread was likely to lead to 250,000 deaths.

Instead, it is hoped the steps which have been taken, which are essentially about suppressing the virus, will limit deaths to 20,000.

BBC report

It also came up with projections for countries like the US.

But these projections do not exclude the number of people that who would have died in the normal course of events if there had been no pandemic. The modellers did not exclude the normal death numbers because they can’t. They have no data to work from.

As the BBC explains in the context of the UK:

Every year more than 500,000 people die in England and Wales – factor in Scotland and Northern Ireland, and the figure is around 600,000.

The coronavirus deaths will not be in addition to these, as statistician David Spiegelhalter, an expert in public understanding of risk at the University of Cambridge, explains.

“There will be substantial overlap in these two groups — many people who die of Covid [the disease caused by coronavirus] would have died anyway within a short period.”

It was a point acknowledged by Sir Patrick at a press conference on Thursday when he said there would be “some overlap” between coronavirus deaths and expected deaths – he just did not know how much of an overlap.

https://www.bbc.com/news/health-51979654

What I trying to say is that the very nature and limitations of modelling means that we have to be very careful in trying to understand the numbers thrown at us. They are actually very nuanced, and come with caveats.

Covid-19 in Islamic countries

In Uncategorized on 24/03/2020 at 4:14 am

When the reports of the Wuhan virus ravaging China came out, mad mullahs said it was Allah punishing the Chinese for persecuting Muslims in Xinjiang for practicing Islam.

And remember, the Indonesian minister who said that prayers ensured that the Covid-19 virus avoided Indonesia, despite the many Chinese tourists who visited Bali?

So how has Covid-19 treated Muslim-run countries?

In https://atans1.wordpress.com/2020/03/21/double-confirm-indonesia-lied-about-its-covid-19-cases/ I’ve reported on the lies told by the Indonesian govt. Indonesia has the virus and people have died.

Worse, thousands of Muslim pilgrims from across Asia gathered at a religious event in Gowa in Indonesia’s province of South Sulawesi on Wednesday (Mar 18), despite fears that their meeting could fuel the spread of a coronavirus, just two weeks after a similar event in M’sia caused more than 500 infections.

Organisers and regional officials said the event in the world’s fourth most populous nation had begun.

“We are more afraid of God,” one of the organisers, Mustari Bahranuddin, told Reuters, when asked about the risk of participants spreading the virus

Malaysia, which is under a partial lockdown, has tallied more than 710 people with the virus, the worst in South East Asia. Many of the cases are linked to a Muslim event in Kuala Lumpur, in February.

“We have a slim chance to break the chain of COVID-19 infections,” Noor Hisham Abdullah, director general of Health Malaysia, said on Facebook.

“Failure is not an option here. If not, we may face a third wave of this virus, which would be greater than a tsunami, if we maintain a ‘so what’ attitude.”

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-51955931

Next

Tens of thousands of people gathered in Bangladesh for a mass prayer session on Wednesday, despite fears it posed a risk of spreading the new coronavirus.

BBC on 19 March.

I left the worst Muslim affected country to the end.

Iran is the third worst-hit country behind China and Italy. Iran’s Supreme Leader has rejected America’s offer of aid to help the country with its battle against coronavirus.

According to the government, there were two “patient zeros”, both of whom died in the pilgrimage city of Qom on 19 February. One, it said, was a businessman who contracted the disease in China. Qom quickly became the epicentre of the outbreak.

The city is an important pilgrimage destination for Shia Muslims. It is home to the country’s top Islamic clerics, and draws some 20 million domestic and around 2.5 million international tourists a year. Each week, thousands of pilgrims navigate the city, paying their respects by kissing and touching the numerous shrines and landmarks.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-51930856?intlink_from_url=https://www.bbc.com/news/world/middle_east&link_location=live-reporting-story

Here’s something that should worry the mad mullahs. Maybe Allah is not a Muslim?

As to whether God is Catholic or Protestant, look out for a coming post.

Covid-19: Social distance illustrated

In Uncategorized on 22/03/2020 at 2:21 pm

Standing or sitting how far apart? See below:

Social distance

Double confirm, Indonesia lied about its Covid-19 cases

In Indonesia on 21/03/2020 at 4:06 am

After I published Covid-19: Indonesia caught lying, the BBC and other Western media (but not our constructive, nation-building media and our anti-PAP alt media) reported that Indonesia’s president has admitted to not telling the truth about the Wuhan virus.

In nearby Indonesia, which according to John Hopkins has 172 recorded cases of the virus, President Joko Widodo admitted recently that he deliberately held back information about the spread of the virus to prevent panic.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-51939911

Btw, for a time on Thurday, a sharp jump in deaths (19) in Indonesia meant that it outranked Italy (2978 deaths then, a few hundred more since then and overtaking China in the death rankings) in mortality rates, Italy is the centre of the Wuhan virus in Europe. There are at least 36,000 cases of the virus in Italy. So this probably means that there a lot unreported cases in Indonesia.

Related post: Haze: What Raffles would have done

Trump and Covid-19

In China on 20/03/2020 at 4:39 am

China reacted angrily after US President Donald Trump referred to the coronavirus as the “Chinese virus”.

The foreign ministry spokesman warned the US should “take care of its own business” before putting the blame on China.

But let’s not forget that last week the same Chinese foreign ministry spokesman shared a conspiracy theory, which alleged the US Army had brought the virus into Wuhan.

The allegation seems to imply that the US has a time machine, enabling it bring a dead body containing the virus from the US this year into Wuhan in December 2019.

Whatever, the US secretary of state was not amused and took umbrage that a Chinese official was giving credence to the allegation by talking about it. Btw, secretary of state Mike Pompeo regularly, like me, refers to the virus as “the Wuhan virus”.

So maybe China is right to be upset?

Related post:

The first case could have on 1 December, not 31 December 2019.

Wuhan virus: Jialat, if this true

Even after recovering from Covid-19

In Uncategorized on 17/03/2020 at 5:42 pm

Still has problems.

[S]he feels somewhat breathless and weak now even though she has fully recovered from the infection

https://www.bbc.com/news/av/world-asia-51714162/how-i-recovered-from-coronavirus-and-isolation?fbclid=IwAR0LjkGQ9f_57Dcz6NIVUnSFfgk58WQSUjhensNvvlsvHW54NFEXN884M8U

Covid-19: Indonesia caught lying

In Indonesia on 17/03/2020 at 4:33 am

On February 15, I posted on why experts were sceptical on the Indonesian claim that there were no Covid-19 cases in the country. I thought it was was in denial, lying or deluded that it had missed the bullet on the Wuhan virus: Wuhan virus: Indonesia is known unknown. (Piece is below)

A minister said that the ang mohs were wrong to be sceptical about the reported absence of the virus despite the many Chinese tourists that had visited Bali. He said prayers to Allah prevented the virus from coming in.

Well on 13 March, our constructive, nation-building media reported that there were five Indonesians here who brought in the virus from Indonesia.

Then an Indonesian spokesman was caught lying that S’pore had refused to provide Indonesia with the details of Indonesians with the virus. The Indonesian Foreign Affairs Ministry said that they had the information and that it had been forwarded to the spokesman’s ministry.

And Mad Dog wants us to kiss Indonesia’s ass? And throw away our arms? With a friend like Indonesia, who needs enemies? With Mad Dog as a Singaporean, who needs enemies?

The 15 February piece.

Wuhan virus: Indonesia is known unknown

Extracts from a very long Guardian report (link below) showing why there is good reason to be worried about the reported absence of the Wuhan virus in Indonesia.

A Harvard academic has defended research suggesting a possible underreporting of coronavirus cases in Indonesia, following fierce criticism from the health minister in the world’s fourth most populous country, which insists it has no cases.

Professor Marc Lipsitch analysed air traffic out of the Chinese city at the centre of the outbreak in China and suggested in a report last week that Indonesia might have missed cases. On Tuesday the Indonesian health minister Terawan Agus Putranto called the report “insulting” and said the country had proper testing equipment.

On Thursday, health officials in Indonesia, which has a population of 272 million and is a popular destination for Chinese tourists, said they were retracing the movements of a Chinese tourist who was diagnosed with coronavirus upon his return from Bali. No-one in Bali has yet been found with symptoms.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/feb/14/indonesia-coronavirus-academic-harvard-marc-lipsitch

Note there were no test kits until early Feb

A leading hypothesis for the lack of reported cases in Indonesia is that imported cases were missed, said Lipsitch, who pointed to a Sydney Morning Herald report that the country had no test kits until 5 February in support of the theory.

“If cases have been introduced into Indonesia, then there is a good chance that more cases are circulating via transmission from those cases. If so, they may go undetected for some weeks as the individuals may not seek care or may not be suspected and tested for coronavirus, especially if there is no direct link to China.”

Samples only tested in Jakarta

Currently, the policy in Yogyakarta is to ship all samples from potentially affected patients to testing facilities in Jakarta

Insufficient training to detect virus

Dr Riris Andono Ahmad, director of the Center for Tropical Medicine at Gadjah Mada University in Yogyakarta, said facilities had been set up to handle potential cases but health practitioners have not received sufficient training. “We need to be much more alert,” Ahmad said.

Insufficient public knowledge

“Public awareness of effective prevention measures is not high,” he said. “For instance, there was a lot of panic-buying of masks, but masks only work with people who are already sick. Whereas something that actually works, like washing hands more frequently – I don’t know how many people are really doing it yet.”

And finally, Indonesian officials are BS artists

One senior former diplomat in the country, who did not want to to be named, said he did not believe official assertions that no cases had been found. “There’s a tendency to hide or gloss over serious problems in the top levels of the government,” he said. “I’m a bit concerned.”.

Washing hands: Areas often missed, and how to wash thoroughly to beat Covid-19

In Uncategorized on 13/03/2020 at 4:08 am

Xia suay! “PA group activities dangerous for seniors’ health”

In Public Administration on 12/03/2020 at 4:20 am

And the PA was only taking precautions after people got sick. It should not have been conducting group activities for seniors, let alone the public (still continuing), to be prudent

The above is how I interpret the following story from the constructive, nation-building media (Unreported facts around SAFRA Jurong outbreak is reported is after the longish quote):

COVID-19: People’s Association to suspend courses and activities for seniors

SINGAPORE: The People’s Association (PA) will suspend courses, organised activities and interest group activities in community clubs and residents’ committee centres that seniors regularly participate in, it announced on Tuesday (Mar 10). 

This will involve about 2,600 classes and 11,000 interest group activities, with about 290,000 non-unique participants, said the PA in a press release.

This comes after activities at seven CCs and RCs were suspended on Saturday, over links to COVID-19 patients in the cluster involving a private dinner function at SAFRA Jurong on Feb 15. 

https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/covid-19-coronavirus-peoples-association-suspend-activities-12522382

After the Jurong SAFRA outbreak was reported by the media, a member of the IB, Grace Yeo, was KPKBing on FB that Jurong Safra should not have been identified because it gave the impression that a PAP govt related body was involved.

It was pointed out to her that people had the right to know that an incident happened at SAFRA Jurong and that it seems she’d rather people catch the virus to protect the reputation of the PAP govt.

She tried to censor these comments by deleting the post but the group administrators restored the post, to much cheering.

Another person then said RCs in the Jurong area were sending mass messages to tell everyone that it was a private event organised by a private person.

Someone then commented that the people attending were members of group activities organised by PA.

With supporters like Grace Yeo, the PAP govt does not need enemies.

 

Covid-19: Stock up on paracetamol and antibiotics?

In China, India on 11/03/2020 at 4:20 am

Supplies of everyday medicine, think pain-reliever paracetamol, face a threat.

India one of the world’s largest exporter of drugs, relies on China for 70% of its raw pharmaceutical ingredients. The Indians are not getting the ingredients because of China’s very responsible attitude of lock-down in response to the Wuhan virus, unlike the US of A which is in denial. 

But before I go into the details of the threat to medicine, a reminder that the most vulnerable people are the old, chronic sickly, or men. If you meet all three criteria, go order yr coffin Women seem to be less likely to die from coronavirus than men, and children appear to be less likely to die than other age groups. Re: Kanna Covid-19, can die or not?

Coming back to the looming shortage of supplies of paracetamol and other everyday drugs, the BBC explains:

India, which is one of the world’s largest exporter of drugs, relies on China for 70 per cent of its raw pharmaceutical ingredients. For many critical antibiotics and antipyretics — medicines that reduce fever — the dependency is almost 100 per cent, experts say.

Prices have surged in recent weeks as Chinese manufacturers have run out of supplies due to traffic restrictions and staff shortages.

There are fears of global shortages of some common drugs after India limited the export of certain medicines due to the coronavirus.

The world’s biggest supplier of generic drugs has restricted exports of 26 ingredients and the medicines made from them.

The restricted drugs include Paracetamol, one of the world’s most widely-used pain relievers.

It comes as many drug ingredient makers in China remain shut or cut output.

India’s drug makers rely on China for almost 70% of the active ingredients in their medicines, and industry experts have warned that they are likely to face shortages if the epidemic continues.

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-51731719

China, especially Hubei province, is critical to the global pharmaceutical supply chain. Disruptions at Chinese and Indian drugmakers will lead to drug shortages worldwide.

Since the outbreak, costs of mainstream antibiotics have risen 50% for Indian drugmakers, the world’s biggest exporter of generic drugs, the FT reports.

Related post Need Paracetamol? Ask SingHealth

Covid 19: Opps! Fake news about beards

In Uncategorized on 09/03/2020 at 2:52 pm

In Wuhan virus: No beards please, I got it wrong about beards having to go to fight the Wuhan virus.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend the shaving of beards as a precaution against Covid 19 infection. The Iranian, Taliban and other mad mullahs will say Wuhan virus is CIA or Chinese plot against Islam.

Btw, the Iranian authorities are not telling Iranian men to shave off their beards to prevent the virus from spreading.

Sorry. 

From the BBC:

1. No, you don’t need to shave your beard to protect against the virus

An old graphic created by the US health authorities about facial hair and respirators has been used incorrectly to suggest men should shave off their beards to avoid catching the coronavirus.

The Nigerian Punch newspaper’s headline said: “To be safe from coronavirus, shave your beard, CDC warns”

False headline claiming that the US health authorities recommend shaving off beards to protect against coronavirus
Presentational white space

We have added labels to the screenshots to indicate whether the story has been found to be “false” or used an “old photo”.

The US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) image shows dozens of examples of facial hair and which ones to avoid when wearing a respirator mask. Beard styles such as Side Whiskers and the Zappa are approved but the Garibaldi and French Fork can interfere with the valve and prevent the respirator working properly.

The graphic is genuine – but it was created in 2017 (well before the coronavirus outbreak) for workers who wear tight-fitting respirators. Contrary to what’s been reported, the CDC has not published it recently and it does not recommend that people shave off their beards.

Similar headlines have appeared in other countries, generating thousands of shares. Australian news outlet 7News posted on Twitter: “How your beard may unknowingly increase your risk of coronavirus.”

Current UK health advice is that while masks are useful for medical staff in hospitals, “there is very little evidence of widespread benefit for members of the public”.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-51710617?intlink_from_url=https://www.bbc.com/news/world/africa&link_location=live-reporting-story

 

Xia suay! Must be Lim Tean again

In Uncategorized on 08/03/2020 at 4:17 am

If you goggle “Lim Tean + Independent” (the fake news purveyor) you will get a long list of recent stories by the Idiots reporting Lim Tean’s KPKBing about the PAP’s response to the Wuhan virus. He says the PAP govt is incompetent, allowing S’poreans to catch the virus.

Well S’pore is praised by the World Health Organisation for as Reuters puts it

the fastidious approach taken to combat the outbreak in the city-state – which has included using police investigators and security cameras to help track and quarantine more than 2,500 people, and won international praise.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-china-health-singapore-analysis/why-singapores-admired-virus-playbook-cant-be-replicated-idUSKBN20E0I4

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO’s chief says “Singapore is leaving no stone unturned.”

————-

The king of masks

In Kiasu? Get hold of the king mask, I reported

that the betterest mask is the N95 respirator. It filters at least 95% of airborne particles, and is more effective than an ordinary surgical or medical mask, which also needs to be changed more frequently.

The pictured mask is the best.

Maybe Lim Tean should do a video castigating the PAP govt for not getting the pictured mask for us?


Seriously,

“Is a coalition that includes Mad Dog, Lim Tean and Meng Seng a better alternative to the 4G?”

Look at Lim Tean’s record. Still no jobs rally after collecting money in 2017 for rally, and no picture, no sound after collecting money to sue CPF yrs ago: Finally Lim Tean called to account on a “broken promise”. To be fair, he did deliver on defamation video two years late. But it was BS.

Can he be trusted to do anything but grab the money?

Is there really a better alternative to PAP 4G?

Kanna Covid-19, can die or not?

In Uncategorized on 05/03/2020 at 5:28 am

(Amended on 9th March to include link to BBC report saying

Women seem to be less likely to die from coronavirus than men, and children appear to be less likely to die than other age groups.

https://www.bbc.com/news/health-51774777)

Original story

If old, chronic sickly, or men, jialat leh.

But first, the usual platitudes:

Researchers currently think that between five and 40 coronavirus cases in 1,000 will result in death, with a best guess of nine in 1,000 or about 1%.

… the World Health Organization’s Director General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said that “globally, about 3.4% of reported Covid-19 cases have died”.

BBC report

But just as some animals are more equal than others, some people are more likely to die if they contract Covid-19: the elderly, the chronically ill, and men (maybe?).

More from the BBC story:

In the first big analysis of more than 44,000 cases from China, the death rate was ten times higher in the very elderly compared to the middle-aged. 

The death rates were lowest for the under 30s – there were eight deaths in 4,500 cases.

And deaths were at least five times more common among people with diabetes, high blood pressure or heart or breathing problems.

There was even a slightly higher number of deaths among men compared to

women.

https://www.bbc.com/news/health-51674743

 

Xia suay! Even ang mohs here panicked

In Uncategorized on 03/03/2020 at 5:03 am

My cousin told me the weekend after DORSCON Orange was announced, the atas supermarket near her place was cleaned out of pasta and much canned foods and instant noodles. The ang mohs didn’t buy the expensive Korean and Japanese instant noodles, only the cheaper ones from M’sia and Indonesia. What a bunch of cheapskates. That they panicked and are are cheapskates shows that they are related to the anti-PAP cybernuts.

The staff told her the ang mohs were worried that that there was going to a Wuhan style stay-in. More evidence they related to our cybernuts, even in Wuhan deliveries are made. [The last sentence was added minutes after publication.]

Btw, she usually shops at NTUC Fairprice. She went into the atas supermarket because her detergent supplies were running role. Needless to say, she never got her clorox etc. The supermarket had also run out of these supplies.

When she tried ordering these online, she was told delivery was in eight days time.

Related post: Thanks to cybernuts, Fairprice is laughing all the way to bank

Wuhan virus surveillance, the Chinese way/ Muslims R virus

In China on 01/03/2020 at 5:52 am

Smartphones, which are carried by most working-age Chinese is a powerful tool in trying to identify people who may be carrying the virus.

Hangzhou city has a self-assessment health-check app. If it classifies someone as a possible carrier of the virus, The red colour of the qr code on Ms Sun’s “Hangzhou Health Code” app indicated that she was supposed to be undergoing 14 days of self-quarantine. Had the code been yellow, it would have meant she was a lower risk and had to isolate herself for seven days. For free passage around the city, people must produce their phones at checkpoints and show they have a green qr code.

Economist

Another use of smartphones, is for people (in Shenzhen for example) to scan a code to register for entry into the city.


Big data still not tailored to fight the virus

Police across China are using big data, provided by Beiyang, a private company, and other private companies to identify individuals (who may or may not have coronavirus) in crowds. Beiyang claims its technology has led to a 22% in calls to China’s emergency hotline, a 36% drop in muggings and 40 per cent fewer burglaries.

————————————————

A Shanghai company says it can assess a person’s emotional state through a 60-second video analysis via smartphonesof “skin, eyeballs, corners of your mouth, eyelids and bodily vibrations”. If it discovers abnormal levels of aggression or stress, people are advised to seek appropriate psychological help

But the use of manpower is still the most common method of getting things done: people man checkpoints armed with clipboards and thermometer guns, or to go door-to-door making note of sniffles.

If the Chinese had introduced the surveillance system it set up in Xinjiang to monitor the Jihadist Joes and Jills in an attempt keep the world safe from Muslim terrorism, to the rest of China, it would have been better equipped to contain the spread of the virus: Did Hali ask Xi for this app when they met?

Moral of the story:

Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither castye your pearls before swine, lest they trample themunder their feet, and turn again and rend you.

Matthew 7:6

Btw,

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend the shaving of beards as a precaution against Covid 19 infection. The Iranian, Taliban and other mad mullahs will say Wuhan virus is CIA or Chinese plot against Islam.

Wuhan virus: No beards please

 

Wuhan virus: No beards please and other news you may have missed

In China on 29/02/2020 at 10:56 am

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend the shaving of beards as a precaution against Covid 19 infection. The Iranian, Taliban and other mad mullahs will say Wuhan virus is CIA or Chinese plot against Islam.

The outbreak in Iran may not have come from China, nor an ethnic Chinese may have brought it in. Int’l media reports that someone from Canada may have been Iran’s zero patient. There’s a large emigre Iranian population in Canada.

Btw, the Iranian authorities are not telling Iranian men to shave off their beards to prevent the virus from spreading.

The Wuhan virus affects telephones too

A rush of employees using phones has led to a deterioration in the audio quality in China and South Korea of about 10 per cent, according to Spearline, which monitors international phone lines.

FT

Spearline expects similar problems soon in Italy.

HK has quarantined a dog that tested “weak positive” for the virus. The owner is infected.The dog will be kept in isolation for 14 days. Not clear whether pet animals can be infected or a source of infection. But experts say better to be safe than sorry.

Patient zero date pushed back by 30 days?

The first case could have on 1 December, not 31 December 2019.

The official Chinese narrative is that the first coronavirus case was on 31 December last yr and many of the first cases of the pneumonia-like infection were immediately connected to a seafood and animal market in Wuhan, in the Hubei province.

But this narrative could be wrong by 30 days. The first case could have occurred on 1 December:

Wuhan virus: Jialat, if this true

Looking on the bright side, Chinese residents of Beijing, Shanghai, Wuhan and other major cities, and minor cities too are enjoying pollution free skies.

And Chinese are enjoying livestreaming

China has the world’s largest livestreaming industry and Wuhan – the epicentre of the Covid-19 outbreak – was already something of a livestreaming hub.

So when the new virus emerged, confining millions of people to their homes, the industry responded quickly, with new programming genres emerging and a shift in the formats of popular TV reality shows.

Audiences have been watching livestreams of both celebrities and ordinary people singing, cooking and exercising in their own homes. Programmes that usually feature live audiences have instead come to resemble video conferences – but have still proven an unusual hit.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-china-51636621

Wuhan virus: Jialat, if this true

In China on 28/02/2020 at 4:00 am

The first case could have on 1 December, not 31 December 2019.

The official Chinese narrative is that the first coronavirus case was on 31 December last yr and many of the first cases of the pneumonia-like infection were immediately connected to a seafood and animal market in Wuhan, in the Hubei province.

But this narrative could be wrong by 30 days. The first case could have occurred on 1 December:

[A} study, by Chinese researchers published in the Lancet medical journal, claimed the first person to be diagnosed with Covid-19, was on 1 December 2019 (a lot of earlier) and that person had “no contact” with the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market.

Wu Wenjuan, a senior doctor at Wuhan’s Jinyintan Hospital and one of the authors of the study, told the BBC Chinese Service that the patient was an elderly man who suffered from Alzheimer’s disease.

“He (the patient) lived four or five buses from the seafood market, and because he was sick he basically didn’t go out,” Wu Wenjuan said.

She also said that three other people developed symptoms in the following days – two of whom had no exposure to Huanan either.

However, the researchers also found that 27 people of a sample of 41 patients admitted to hospital in the early stages of the outbreak “had been exposed to the market”.

The hypothesis that the outbreak started at the market and could have been transmitted from a living animal to a human host before spreading human-to-human is still considered the most likely, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20200221-coronavirus-the-harmful-hunt-for-covid-19s-patient-zero

 

Xia suay! KNN! Why our millionaire ministers not ordering money to be laundered?

In Uncategorized on 24/02/2020 at 4:27 am

Chinese banks have been ordered to remove potentially contaminated notes from circulation. Only after launderisation (sterilisation) will the notes return to general circulation.

Why we no follow?

Seriously

In ordinary circumstances, modern notes carry similar quantities of bacteria to those found on a door handle. It is harder for germs to adhere to newer polymer notes.

FT

As our notes are polymer, no need for PAP govt to launder our notes. That’s a private sector initiative reserved for banks.

But it’ll not prevent cybernuts from calling for this when they hear that China is laundering its notes.

Hongkie monkeys panic buying, S’porean cybernuts must follow: Thanks to cybernuts, Fairprice is laughing all the way to bank.

Then there’s the use of masks: Xia suay! PRC monkey see, S’porean monkey must do isit?

Xia suay! PRC monkey see, S’porean monkey must do isit?

In Public Administration on 23/02/2020 at 1:01 pm

Not juz the PAP govt question masks’ effectiveness.

Public health bodies, including the World Health Organisation, US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Australian Department of Health, question whether masks are an effective guard against infection and emphasise the importance instead of regular handwashing.

From Q&As on WHO’s official website on “when to wear a mask”.

  • If you are healthy, you only need to wear a mask if you are taking care of a person with suspected 2019-nCoV infection.
  • Wear a mask if you are coughing or sneezing.
  • Masks are effective only when used in combination with frequent hand-cleaning with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.

Dr David Carrington, a clinical virologist at St George’s, University of London, told BBC News that “routine surgical masks for the public are not an effective protection against viruses or bacteria carried in the air” because they are too loose, have no air filter and leave the eyes exposed.

But to be fair to the mob of anti-PAP cybernuts and activists, WHO has no advisory on whether there is a need to wear a mask when going outdoor in a city as infected as S’pore, and the above advice is “general lah”.

Cybernuts point out that in Wuhan masks are worn. And in other cities in China, and in HK.

Chinese monkeys do, our cybernuts must follow isit? Monkey see, monkey do.

Jokes aside, as I wrote in Kiasu? Get hold of the king mask/ Listen to expert on infectious disease

 A very Chinese habit, the using of masks.

There’s widespread use of face masks among the ordinary population, whether or not they’ve been instructed to do so by the authorities.

  • More than half a million staff working on public transport in China have been told to use masks
  • There are reports that some shops, businesses and other public premises have told people to use masks if they want to enter

Culturally, it’s quite common for people in China to wear face masks, both as general protection and if they feel they are getting ill.

Same with Hongkies. And becoming the practice in S’pore among cybernuts as TOC and other anti-PAP activists spread the lie that it’s effective against the Wuhan virus; and KPKBing that the PAP govt is not giving out enough masks. (Fake news that S’poreans panicking about shortage of masks)

There is very little evidence that wearing face masks make a difference. Experts say good hygiene – such as regularly washing your hands and certainly before putting them near your mouth – is vastly more effective.

BBC

And in said article I quoted SDP’s Chairman, Professor Paul Tambyah the only infectious diseases specialist in NUH, if not S’pore (No money in this line, so doctors avoid it. Remember the PAP MP doc who implied he did not respect people with low pay?) who explains the real purpose of the surgical masks:

Question: “Should we only wear a mask if we are sick? Wouldn’t a mask help to protect a healthy person too?”

Professor Tambyah: “Well, it does both. You see, the mask actually prevents or reduces the amount of virus you’re going to shed. But ultimately, you shouldn’t be walking around town if you’re sick because when the mask gets wet, it loses its efficacy. So ideally, you should put on a mask, go see a doctor and then get treated.”

“Now, the reason why [healthy] people wear a mask is because they are not sure that people who are going to be sick are going to be staying at home. And I think that is the message that needs to get across, you see? If you are sick, you shouldn’t go to the office, you shouldn’t take the MRT, you should get yourself evaluated. You should put on a mask, go and get yourself evaluated by your doctor.”

“And if everybody does that, then there’s no need [for healthy people] to wear a mask, right? Because then everybody walking in the streets is going to be healthy. And you don’t need to worry about some guy coughing in your face and infecting you. Right now, you see, too many people are worried that there are people who are sick walking around. And that, I think, needs to be addressed.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1-qK7OeTRf8

Wuhan virus: Indonesia is known unknown

In Indonesia on 15/02/2020 at 1:37 pm

Extracts from a very long Guardian report (link below) showing why there is good reason to be worried about the reported absence of the Wuhan virus in Indonesia.

A Harvard academic has defended research suggesting a possible underreporting of coronavirus cases in Indonesia, following fierce criticism from the health minister in the world’s fourth most populous country, which insists it has no cases.

Professor Marc Lipsitch analysed air traffic out of the Chinese city at the centre of the outbreak in China and suggested in a report last week that Indonesia might have missed cases. On Tuesday the Indonesian health minister Terawan Agus Putranto called the report “insulting” and said the country had proper testing equipment.

On Thursday, health officials in Indonesia, which has a population of 272 million and is a popular destination for Chinese tourists, said they were retracing the movements of a Chinese tourist who was diagnosed with coronavirus upon his return from Bali. No-one in Bali has yet been found with symptoms.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/feb/14/indonesia-coronavirus-academic-harvard-marc-lipsitch

Note there were no test kits until early Feb

A leading hypothesis for the lack of reported cases in Indonesia is that imported cases were missed, said Lipsitch, who pointed to a Sydney Morning Herald report that the country had no test kits until 5 February in support of the theory.

“If cases have been introduced into Indonesia, then there is a good chance that more cases are circulating via transmission from those cases. If so, they may go undetected for some weeks as the individuals may not seek care or may not be suspected and tested for coronavirus, especially if there is no direct link to China.”

Samples only tested in Jakarta

Currently, the policy in Yogyakarta is to ship all samples from potentially affected patients to testing facilities in Jakarta

Insufficient training to detect virus

Dr Riris Andono Ahmad, director of the Center for Tropical Medicine at Gadjah Mada University in Yogyakarta, said facilities had been set up to handle potential cases but health practitioners have not received sufficient training. “We need to be much more alert,” Ahmad said.

Insufficient public knowledge

“Public awareness of effective prevention measures is not high,” he said. “For instance, there was a lot of panic-buying of masks, but masks only work with people who are already sick. Whereas something that actually works, like washing hands more frequently – I don’t know how many people are really doing it yet.”

And finally, Indonesian officials are BS artists

One senior former diplomat in the country, who did not want to to be named, said he did not believe official assertions that no cases had been found. “There’s a tendency to hide or gloss over serious problems in the top levels of the government,” he said. “I’m a bit concerned.”.

 

 

Wuhan virus: black humour

In Uncategorized on 12/02/2020 at 4:39 am

A senior health official sent from Beijing to Wuhan to publicly reassure the plebs that the disease was “preventable and controllable”. He contracted the virus himself, becoming a symbol of government incompetence and mendacity on social media and the internet. (Source int’l media)

Women are the stronger sex.

“The average age of the [ Wuhan virus] patients was 55.5 years, including 67 men and 32 women,” said a Lancet paper published last month.

It is an eye-catching discrepancy. A picture is emerging of 2019-nCoV as a novel pathogen that disproportionately affects older men, particularly those with existing illnesses such as heart disease and diabetes. A similar pattern can be found in the statistics on Sars, which caused about 780 deaths nearly two decades ago.

FT

FT goes on to say that some scientists are now convinced that these sex differences in clinical data reflect a genuine male vulnerability to coronaviruses, rather than a bias in exposure.

(Following added at 2.00pm on 12 Feb 2020.)

Never ending cruise to nowhere. Shades of the Flying Dutchman:

A cruise ship carrying more than 1,450 passengers has been told it cannot dock in Thailand over coronavirus fears.

The Westerdam had already been turned away from several ports, including in Japan, Taiwan, Guam and the Philippines, amid fears of the virus.

BBC report

From Wikipedia:

The Flying Dutchman is a legendary ghost ship that can never make port and is doomed to sail the oceans forever.

Panic? What panic?/ Anti-PAP activists loi hei wish

In Internet, Public Administration on 10/02/2020 at 4:25 am

Social media and the internet are full of pictures of empty supermarket shelves here.

Must be the work of anti-PAP activists and others who wish S’pore ill doing their best to astro turf that S’poreans are panicking because the PAP govt has not done enough to contain the Wuhan virus. Just go to Goh Meng Seng’s FB page and see the lies he’s trying to spread.


Anti-PAP activists lot hei wish

Secret Squirrel’s sidekick Morocco Mole says that his second cousin removed working in the ISD tells him that when Lim Tean, Goh Meng Seng, Tan Jee Say, Tan Kin Lian, Kirsten Han, PJ Thum and Mad Dog loh heied last Friday, they loh heied that S’pore would go into a deep, deep recession because of the virus. He also reports that the host, Goh Meng Seng, claimed that his wallet was Wuhan virus infected and asked the others to pay. They ran out of the restaurant without paying the bill.

But the restaurant owner is not out of pocket. He knew Meng Seng’s reputation and told his staff to use only left overs and other unwanted stuff to prepare the yusheng.

—————————————————————————-

The truth is that the majority of voters trust the PAP govt to look after us. They are so trusting that as of the morning of the final collection date, which was 9 Feb, only 54% of households collected their masks, according to The Straits Times (ST).

Collection date for the masks now extended until 29 Feb.

Related posts:

Fake news that S’poreans panicking about shortage of masks

Kiasu? Get hold of the king mask/ Listen to expert on infectious disease

Kiasu? Get hold of the king mask/ Listen to expert on infectious disease

In Uncategorized on 09/02/2020 at 5:05 am

Don’t bother with surgical masks. They are BS.

There are masks and then there are masks.

The betterest mask is the N95 respirator. It filters at least 95% of airborne particles, and is more effective than an ordinary surgical or medical mask, which also needs to be changed more frequently.

Look at the pixs of HK CEO and China’s PM, when they visit the plebs. They use this mask: google, if you don’t believe me. Let’s see if our millionaire ministers follow them. If they do, time to demand we get the N95 respirator

 

Fyi, medical advice in China is to change face masks regularly, as often as four times a day for medical teams. This would require a minimum of two million masks each day.

A very Chinese habit, the using of masks.

There’s widespread use of face masks among the ordinary population, whether or not they’ve been instructed to do so by the authorities.

  • More than half a million staff working on public transport in China have been told to use masks
  • There are reports that some shops, businesses and other public premises have told people to use masks if they want to enter

Culturally, it’s quite common for people in China to wear face masks, both as general protection and if they feel they are getting ill.

Same with Hongkies. And becoming the practice in S’pore as TOC and other anti-PAP activists spread the lie that it’s effective against the Wuhan virus and KPKBing that the PAP govt is not giving out enough masks. (Fake news that S’poreans panicking about shortage of masks)

There is very little evidence that wearing face masks make a difference. Experts say good hygiene – such as regularly washing your hands and certainly before putting them near your mouth – is vastly more effective.

BBC

The SDP’s chairman, Professor Paul Tambyah the only infectious diseases specialist in NUH, if not S’pore (No money in this line, so doctors avoid it. Remember the PAP MP doc who implied he did not respect people with low pay?) explains the real purpose of the surgical mask:

Question: “Should we only wear a mask if we are sick? Wouldn’t a mask help to protect a healthy person too?”

Professor Tambyah: “Well, it does both. You see, the mask actually prevents or reduces the amount of virus you’re going to shed. But ultimately, you shouldn’t be walking around town if you’re sick because when the mask gets wet, it loses its efficacy. So ideally, you should put on a mask, go see a doctor and then get treated.”

“Now, the reason why [healthy] people wear a mask is because they are not sure that people who are going to be sick are going to be staying at home. And I think that is the message that needs to get across, you see? If you are sick, you shouldn’t go to the office, you shouldn’t take the MRT, you should get yourself evaluated. You should put on a mask, go and get yourself evaluated by your doctor.”

“And if everybody does that, then there’s no need [for healthy people] to wear a mask, right? Because then everybody walking in the streets is going to be healthy. And you don’t need to worry about some guy coughing in your face and infecting you. Right now, you see, too many people are worried that there are people who are sick walking around. And that, I think, needs to be addressed.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1-qK7OeTRf8

 

Fake news that S’poreans panicking about shortage of masks

In Internet, Public Administration on 02/02/2020 at 10:50 am

S’poreans are not picking up their free masks.

When I read that each Singapore household would receive four surgical face masks via 89 Community Centres (CCs) and 654 Residents’ Committee (RC) centres, I tot we would soon know whether S’poreans are genuinely concerned about the shortage of the masks.

Or whether the comments on social media and the internet about the desperate of S’poreans afraid of the Wuhan virus looking in vain for masks are nothing but astro-turfing by the usual anti-PAP paper activists and cybernuts playing up the absence of masks in the shops as incompetence on the part of the PAP govt.

The evidence, so far, is that these anti-PAP types lied about the concerns of ordinary S’poreans

When the Hougang Community Club opened its doors at 2pm on Saturday (Feb 1) for the first day of mask collection, there were as many volunteers waiting as there were residents in line.

“We had about 10 to 20 people in the queue in the first hour so we cleared that very fast,” said Community Club Management Committee chairman for Hougang SMC Joel Leong. “It was a very small queue … We haven’t seen a big crowd (in the first two hours).”

These scenes were similar to those at other distribution centres across the island, during a largely uneventful first day of mask collection for members of the public.

https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/wuhan-coronavirus-singapore-free-surgical-mask-collection-queues-12380564

Of course, this could be fake news from the constructive nation-building CNA. But I doubt it. Ever since the really bad haze we had in 2013 (Remember this incident P Ravi’s reposting: What the govt should have done?), there is anecdotal evidence that the 60-70% of S’poreans who vote for the PAP have been prepared: some masks are stored away, ready for use.


Plenty of masks

Haze: PAP govt cares, they really do

————————————————————-

Whatever, the attempt by the anti-PAP paper activists and cybernuts to use the Wuhan virus to show that the PAP govt is incompetent has failed. Worse they were caught lying.

And with a GE later this yr, the serious Oppo (Wankers’ Party , SDP sans Mad Dog and Tan Cheng Bock’s PSP) needs these anti-PAP paper activists and cybernuts like they need a hole in the head.

More evidence that these anti-PAP paper activists and cybernuts do not wish S’pore well.

Btw, my advice is to pick-up the free masks, and store them away for future use. Don’t know about you, but I can smell the haze

 

 

 

 

Iran’s “Ownself shoot ownself” reminds me of SGH tragedy

In Public Administration on 30/01/2020 at 10:42 am

When I read sometime back that Iran’s president Rouhani saying that the shooting down of an airliner should not be blamed on one individual, saying “It’s not only the person who pulled the trigger, but also others who are responsible”, it reminded of

What really went wrong at SGH?

And why the reluctance to do more than issue letters of warning?

a piece I wrote in 2016 about an incident at SGH where 25 people were infected and seven deaths were possibly caused by the cock-up

The piece went on:

A regular reader and commenter of this blog who seems to have been  a medical doctor and administrator has an explanation.

Note he had already raised the issue of the use of shared vials here before the internal report came out. He goes further below presumably having read the internal report.

This WAS a systems failure whereby the major gap was allowing same vial of insulin for multiple patients i.e. shared vials, although supposedly using fresh, sterile needles & syringes. By using shared vials, this created a single point of failure if any of the 1,001 aspects of infection control was not strictly adhered to. E.g. lack of hand disinfection — between patients, before drug preparation, before administering insulin, after administering insulin; not disinfecting the rubber bung of the shared vial adequately before use; not using new sterile needles/syringes; using new sterile needles/syringes but leaving them exposed for too long or mishandling them thus rendering them no longer sterile; etc etc. The possibilities are endless.

And then the pathogen being introduced into the shared vial and subsequently being re-transmitted, even though subsequent usage all followed 100% infection control — the bug is already in the insulin/vial, no matter how solid & how sterile you prepare the subsequent insulin administrations for other patients, you’re simply injecting them with already contaminated insulin.

Who’s responsible?!?! The senior doctors, medical directors who came up with this protocol in the 1st place??? The CEO or chief medical officer who approved & signed off on this protocol?!?!? The infection control team & educators who didn’t educate the ground staff enough, and weren’t vigilant enough in their audits & random spot checks?!?!?! The external audit teams who couldn’t detect any shortcomings & signed off that the staff are following protocol?!?!? The actual ground staff/staff nurses who got careless or bochap or simply burnt out to overlook 100% of the by-the-book steps?!??! How many of these staff nurses??? 1, 2 or the whole lot of them?!?!?

Going by what he says maybe the Health Minister must commit hari-kiti? No wonder only warning letters were issued? And ST is wayanging?

(Related post: GCT believes in Jap values. But not for the elites.)

Seems I was right to ask if ST’s call for a public cyber-lynching of “responsible” staff is a lot of wayang aimed at distracting attention away from those that must take responsibility: the CEO of SGH and the MoH senior officer that delayed reporting the matter to the minister.

“Where does a wise man hide a leaf? In the forest. But what does he do if there is no forest? He grows a forest to hide it in.”― G.K. ChestertonThe Innocence of Father Brown

In this story, Father Brown, an amateur detective, deducted that a commanding officer hid his murder of a fellow-officer by sending his soldiers into battle in the area where the body lay. The dead bodies of the soldiers “covered up” the murder.

Can wearing masks stop the spread of viruses?

In Uncategorized on 27/01/2020 at 9:31 am

They could help stop the spread of viruses, but not for the reason ordinary people say they use masks: that they protect against viruses or bacteria carried in the air

Dr David Carrington, of St George’s, University of London, told BBC News “routine surgical masks for the public are not an effective protection against viruses or bacteria carried in the air”, which was how “most viruses” were transmitted, because they were too loose, had no air filter and left the eyes exposed.

https://www.bbc.com/news/health-51205344

Where they work is they help you avoid touching your eyes and nose unnecessarily: preventing “Ownself infect ownself”.

Remember that viruses can land on yr hands but they only cause problems when they enter yr body. Likely entry points are the mouth and eyes. The ears and nose have hair filters.

After reading the BBC article in above link especially this bit

The NHS says the best way to avoid catching viruses such as flu is to:

  • regularly wash your hands with warm water and soap
  • avoid touching your eyes and nose wherever possible
  • maintain a fit and healthy lifestyle

I came to the conclusion that they help prevent “Ownself infect ownself”.

PAP really makes case for banning tobacco and alcohol

In Public Administration on 01/07/2019 at 11:26 am

 

Our Pet Minister* (The PAP sees voters who own pets as an important constituency*) likes to draw attention to thescientific literature that show that cannabis and other drugs are harmful, as the reason not to decriminalise them.

Well there is plenty of evidence that alcohol and tobacco are more harmful.

So why PAP no ban them?

Ang moh tua kee at work (West’s ‘human rights superiority complex’)? Our colonial masters didn’t ban alcohol and tobacco but banned these drugs, so their PAP running dogs followed blindly isit?

Fyi

[A] report published today by the Global Commission on Drug Policy, an independent group of 26 former presidents and other bigwigs. They conclude that, as far as the scientific evidence is concerned, current drug laws have no rhyme or reason to them. The commission blames the UN’s drug classification system, which sorts some 300 psychoactive substances into “schedules” according to their harms and benefits. Some, such as morphine, have medical uses. Others, such as psilocybin (the active ingredient in magic mushrooms), are used mostly recreationally. Drugs without any apparent medical utility are automatically placed in the most dangerous category—and subjected to the strictest criminal penalties—regardless of the risk they pose.

https://www.economist.com/graphic-detail/2019/06/25/what-is-the-most-dangerous-drug


*He and his side kick Louis Ng (PAP MP still sore at childhood failure?) got more power then the ministers responsible for Malays, Indians and Eurasians combined. Says something about the power and influence that pets who really own their so-called masters have in S’pore. Minorities can only envy these dogs and cats.

Beer, glorious beer

In Uncategorized on 12/06/2019 at 5:43 am

Beer is being marketed as a wellness drink to enjoy after a tough workout.

FT

No wonder, the Hash Harriers here have a reputation for boozing after a run. They knew it was a wellness drink long before the beer cos: must be ’cause of the many medicos running.

Pro-biz PAP govt will never do this

In Uncategorized on 25/05/2019 at 5:00 am

Brazil is suing British American Tobacco and Philip Morris International, the two biggest cigarette companies, to recover health treatment costs of tobacco-related diseases.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-brazil-tobacco-lawsuit/in-landmark-case-brazil-sues-top-tobacco-firms-to-recover-public-health-costs-idUSKCN1SS2DN

What our media can learn from the BBC

In Media on 27/02/2019 at 6:51 pm

Both our constructive, nation building media and anti-PAP publications like Terry’s Online Channel.

This BBC story titled

Singapore HIV data leak shakes a vulnerable community

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-47288219

sets out the convoluted facts in a simple to read and follow narrative, while also highlighting the tragedy and fears of HIV sufferers. The use of this incident by both the PAP, and the anti-PAP activists, and their allied cybernuts for political ends, confuses the facts and issues, and detracts from the human suffering caused.

 

Fixing Sabo King minister

In Political governance, Property on 29/01/2019 at 10:58 am

I refer to my Double confirm, ground not sweet for PAP (about the discrepancy between falling HDB resale prices, while private property prices keep inching up in an election yr) where I alsomumbled about how the PAP can make the ground sweeter.

This blog is a fan of of Lawrence Wong: Lawrence Wong: a PM-in-waiting.

But if the PM wants to make sure of a strong mandate for 4G leaders (Why PAP aiming for 65% of the popular vote), in addition to promising not to increase GST by two points (How PAP can win 65% plus of the vote), he should publicly sack Lawrence Wong just before campaigning for next GE begins. This should give HDB resale flat owners peace of mind: Sers will cover all expiring leases.

I’ll let the constructive, nation-building media explain why:

In March 2017, National Development Minister Lawrence Wong cautioned home buyers not to assume that all old HDB flats would automatically be eligible for the Selective En bloc Redevelopment Scheme (Sers).

“From what we hear from agents on the ground, in the past, when people buy older flats in a mature estate, the balance lease was not a top-of-the-mind concern,” said Ms Sun.

“But now, it seems like in almost every other deal, that would be the key question asked.”

Owners of old flats concerned about depreciation also tried to sell their apartments, leading to an increase in the supply of resale flats.

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/hdb-resale-numbers-highest-2012-while-sales-private-homes-dive

No need yet

to promise big lease buyback amounts for old flats lorr. And allow more of the compensation to be withdrawable in cash apart from putting into CPF Life.

This would mean loosening the connection between LBS valuation and the ever-dropping actual market transactions.

Fat cat MD

Btw, cybernuts should realise that not coming from an elite school is no sign of competency: Lawrence Wong went to a neighbourhood school and then VJC, not even Hwa Chong or ACS.

 

 

“Singapore is a not a clean city. It’s a cleaned city.”

In Environment, Political governance, Public Administration on 06/11/2018 at 2:10 pm

So what we may ask?

More than S$120m a year is spent on cleaning public spaces. And PAPpies not happy that the PAP administration has to this amount to keep S’pore clean. (Perhaps they hope that this money can be diverted to millionaire ministers?).

The PAPpy unhappiness

At first, the policy [LKY’s Clean and Green policy of which the anti-littering campaign was part of ] worked, according to Liak Teng Lit, chairman of the National Environment Agency. A combination of public awareness campaigning and punitive measures made a difference. More people picked up after themselves. The city became cleaner.

————————————–

Green S’pore

LKY & greenery

My S’pore: A greener & more pleasant land

Urban planning: a constrasting tale of UK cities & S’pore

2025: LKY’s memorial unveiled

Uniquely global: Rainforest in a global city

————————————

In 1961, Singapore had a “broom brigade” of 7,000 day labourers who were directly employed by the department of health. By 1989, there were only 2,100.

But things changed. The city became wealthier, and it became easier to use low-cost labour to clean up. Nowadays, says Liak, Singapore isn’t clean because locals fear fines. It’s clean because there’s an army of workers scrubbing it. They do the heavy lifting. More than anyone else, they keep Singapore clean.

“Singapore is a not a clean city. It’s a cleaned city,” Liak declares.

There are 56,000 cleaners registered with the National Environment Agency. There are likely thousands of independent contractors who aren’t registered. Mostly they’re low-paid foreign workers or elderly workers. Taipei, by contrast, has maybe 5,000 cleaners, Liak adds.

http://www.bbc.com/capital/story/20181025-the-cost-of-keeping-singapore-squeaky-clean

One reason they give for wanting us to pick up litter: good for our souls i.e. civic consciousness the PAPpy way

Edward D’Silva [chairman of the Public Hygiene Council] is frustrated about the way the rise of this army of cleaners has changed the culture in Singapore. With so many cleaners, Singaporeans came to regard cleaning up as someone else’s job. Today, Singaporeans often leave their tray on the table at hawker centres after eating a meal, because they don’t consider it littering, or they think it’s the cleaners’ job to clean up after them. (In fairness, tray return facilities were only installed in 2013.)

D’Silva says students don’t pick up after themselves either, because they’ve always had a cleaner to do it for them. It’s something the Public Hygiene Council is trying to address at local schools. Simply put, he thinks Singaporeans have had it too easy for too long, and they need to change. Liak agrees.

“The government cleans the apartment [building], right up to your corridor, typically twice a day. When you have a very efficient cleaning service, and your neighbour messes up the place, you don’t blame the neighbour, you blame the cleaner for not picking it up,” he says.

BBC report

The real reason, want to save $:

In Singapore, cleaners are mostly drawn from a pool of roughly a million foreign workers as well as local aged workers. But as Singapore’s population grows and labour becomes more expensive, it simply won’t be affordable to employ so many cleaners.

Edward D’Silva says part of the original push for a cleaner Singapore was economic. Cleaning public spaces is expensive and it takes money away from more valuable pursuits. He says that’s still the case, and Singapore needs to change its behaviour fast. Singapore spends at least SGD$120m (US$87m) a year on cleaning public spaces.

“If you are able to instill and cultivate a habit whereby people don’t throw their litter anywhere and anyhow, then the money you would have otherwise spent to employ those cleaners, well, millions of dollars could have been better spent on health and education,” he said.

BBC report

As usual with the PAP, it’s all about money.

Coming to a polyclinic near u

In Internet on 22/09/2018 at 6:43 am

Video consultation for patients with chronic problems who need to see a doctor only because the prescriptions need to be renewed. At least that’s what Morocco Mole, Secret Squirrel’s side-kick, tells me. It’ll take a while though.

But based on this experience of a S’porean using video consultation, the wait will be worth it and give poor or cheap skate oldies with chronic diseases another reason to vote for the PAP.

Aisha Lin, a 25-year-old Singaporean … told the Nikkei Asian Review that video consultation had proved to be “an optimal experience” for her. “If I just have a minor condition and/or require prescribed medication, I really dislike being in the same enclosed space as other very sick people — those with a high fever, stomach flu, etc,” she said.

Nikkei Asian Review

Whatever telemedicine is already here. Ms Lin was using Singapore’s Doctor Anywhere. More on this app

Singapore’s Doctor Anywhere, launched in 2017, is one of the growing healthcare apps in the city-state, with some 50,000 users serviced by 50 doctors. The app offers video consultation, which is priced at 20 Singapore dollars ($14.50), as well as the delivery of medicines to a patient’s location.

[…]

There are also some benefits for doctors who work with tele-health apps. The apps can be a gateway to reach “more potential patients,” said Lim Wai Mun, founder of Doctor Anywhere. “Doctors can feel more connected with the patients by making themselves available and more accessible,” he added.

Access to healthcare here: Below average

In Media, Public Administration on 14/09/2018 at 10:55 am

As Yogi Bear might have put it: “Worse than below average bear”

I’m sure the editor of the constructive, nation-building publication that highlighted the u/m would privately have been told he “does not mean S’pore well”:

When it came to evaluating access to healthcare, Singapore scored 45.46 – below the study’s average of 50.91 – even as it boasts the most value-for-money system. This was attributed to shortages of hospital beds and skilled healthcare professionals.

For this study, “access” is evaluated by the number of skilled health professional density and hospital beds in relation to its population, and the percentage of people at risk of impoverishment due to surgical care.

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/spores-healthcare-system-best-value-and-satisfaction-falls-behind-providing-access-study

But

Overall, Singapore’s healthcare model topped Philips’ measure of healthcare value with a score of 54.61. Australia and Germany followed behind with scores of 52.59 and 50.93 respectively. The report evaluates value by averaging each country’s healthcare access, satisfaction and efficiency scores.

But waz the point of being number 1 when access is below the average bear.

Btw, TOC, TRE while cheering on PJ thum and friends and supporting the repeal of s377A, ignored this bread-and-butter failure of the PAP administration: Advice to cybernuts writing in TOC, TRE etc

The PAP is lucky in its enemies. With enemies like these, how can S’pore not be a de facto one-party state. Sad.

Germs: Airport trays worse than the toilets

In Uncategorized on 13/09/2018 at 4:21 am

At least in the UK.

From BBC

Airline passengers are being warned that nasty cold and flu bugs lurk inside the airport trays they put their possessions in before they go through the security machines.

The Daily Mail reports that tests on the trays showed half carried respiratory viruses.

According to the Daily Telegraph, scientists from Nottingham University and Finland found that the trays – often containing shoes and belts as well as detritus from pockets such as used tissues – had more germs than even toilet areas.

No respiratory viruses were found on toilet flush handles, seats or doors – possibly because they are cleaned frequently.

A gd word for Duterte

In Uncategorized on 06/06/2018 at 4:12 am

The many controversies of Rodrigo Duterte’s presidency have overshadowed his considerable achievement in reducing smoking rates. No he didn’t it by shooting smokers aka like drug users and dealers. He strengthened an existing law. In May 2017, he passed an executive order banning smoking in public, imposing a maximum penalty of a four-month jail term and a 5,000-peso ($95) fine: the S’pore way sort off.

Taxes on tobacco are also shooting thru the roof.

S’poreans unhappy enough to make Mad Dog PM?

In CPF, Economy, Political governance on 04/06/2018 at 9:56 am

And Lim Tean (Where’s yr defamation video and jobs rally Lim Tean?) and Meng Seng, our very own Wu Sangui (Silence of Goh Meng Seng), ministers?

In The real reason why Reformasi won’t happen here, I pointed out that whatever the KPKBing S’poreans were not really that unhappy, and in  Why Reformasi won’t happen here, that maybe

Maybe they really don’t oppose the PAP? They juz make some noise, hoping the PAP will throw them some goodies? Bit like my dogs barking or whining to get my attention.

Now after Tun’s comments to the FT that

I think the people of Singapore, like the people in Malaysia, must be tired of having the same government, the same party since independence.

got the cybernuts who think the sun shines from Tun’s ass (Anti-PAP S’poreans sucking up to Tun) happy

there’s this survey which says

Singaporeans are less satisfied with their overall quality of life and democratic rights compared with previous years, according to a survey conducted by two National University of Singapore (NUS) dons.

The findings were unveiled on Thursday (31 May) at NUS’ Shaw Foundation Alumni House as part of a book launch for Happiness, Wellbeing and Society – What matters for Singaporeans” by its Business School associate professors Siok Kuan Tambyah and Tan Soo Jiuan.

The survey found that Singaporeans, on average, were the least satisfied with their overall quality of life at a personal level in 2016, compared with the surveys in previous years.

Out of 15 choices, they were least satisfied with their household income followed by studies (for students), level of education attained, jobs (for working adults) and the standard of living.

https://sg.news.yahoo.com/singaporeans-less-satisfied-quality-life-democratic-rights-nus-survey-130122483.html

So do you think that the survey shows that Reformasi is coming at the next GE because S’poreans are that unhappy? I think not.

Btw, I think Siok Kuan Tambyah is the wife of Mad Dog’s Doctor-in-Chief, who has been doing a decent job keeping Mad Dog sane, though this recent outburst is worrying http://yoursdp.org/news/careshield_stop_making_public_healthcare_a_profit_making_business/2018-06-01-6245*.

Dr  Paul Anantharajah Tambyah’s wife is an associate professor in NUS Biz School. Strange if there are two lady Tambyahs in the same faculty. But then there were once two Indian Syrian Othordox Christians in the AG”s Chambers. They are a really tiny Indian minority here.


Countering SDP’s views on Eldershield

*Here’s a good FB analysis from a pro PAP lawyer who is a fair-minded person

The SDP article claims that “government is making a handsome profit from ElderShield.”

An outright LIE.

ElderShield cover is provided by 3 private insurers, namely Aviva Limited, The Great Eastern Life Assurance Company Limited and NTUC Income Insurance Co-operative Limited. An insured is assigned to one of these 3 carriers randomly.

Hence, when SDP claims the G is making a large profit, there is no truth in this assertion.

In addition, the underwriting profit from ElderShield does not equate to premiums collected to date, less claims – i.e. no-one, not the insurance carriers, makes a 96% profit from ElderShield. The SDP claim is pure balderdash. This is because ElderShield is a disability scheme and insureds are likely to pay more in premiums upfront, and are more likely to receive payout when the insured cohorts get older.

Minister Gan explained all this in response to a question from Dr Daniel Goh of the Workers’ Party last February – see here https://www.moh.gov.sg/…/Parliamentar…/2017/ElderShield.html

In other words, in order to ascertain the underwriting profit, reserves for future claims have to be deducted. SDP’s calculation makes ZERO attempt to do this and is actuarial nonsense.

Quite shamefully false (as a matter of fact) from the SDP. Outrageous!

 

Diabetes: The real reason PM is worried?

In CPF, Political governance, Public Administration on 31/10/2017 at 6:50 am

In his NatDay Rally speech he worried that 22% of the population will get diabetes (from the present 11%). Maybe he worried that if that happens, then CPF Life Standard Plan will be in trouble?

The Standard plan surely will go bust because the Standard plan covers until death and diabetics could live longer than those without diabetes. There’ll be a public backlash because of the “Fund go bankrupt, yr problem”.


CPF Life die, Yr Problem

There is a provision in the law governing the CPF Life Plans which states that payouts are contingent on the Plans being solvent. This is because premiums that are paid in to get the annuities are pooled and collectively invested. If the plan you chose doesn’t have enough money to pay out, you die. This is unlike the MS scheme, where account holders are legally entitled to the monies in their CPF accounts.

More details. Note that there are now only two plans, not the menu first offered. Of the two existing plans, the Standard Plan, is the less attractive one because there is a lot KS in favour of the annuity provider. Of course if u  are confident u’ll live to 150, opt for it. But u still got the worry of “Fund insolvent, yr problem”.


There will also be problems at the Basic Fund that pays out annuities until people reach 90 if everyone lives longer because they got diabetes. And there could be a lot more 90-year old destitute S’poreans who are unlikely to vote PAP.

Diabetics live longer

Seriously, PM’s NDP rally speech on diabetes reminded me of shumething I read last year from which I concluded that diabetics are likely to outlive those wihout it, if the diabetics manage to keep their diabetes under control. Diabetes cannot be cured in most cases, but it can be controlled.

So it’s a good thing to have because the medication also works to prevent cancer, heart disease or cognitive impairment.

Metformin, the most basic medicine prescribed for diabetes, seems is a miracle drug helping those with  cancer, heart disease or cognitive impairment.

There is already a candidate anti-ageing drug, a generic called  that has been widely used by diabetics around the world. It works to lower insulin levels in the blood and triggers a range of other molecular pathways that are likely to influence the ageing process. The way it works inside the cell is not completely understood but it is thought to favourably influence metabolic and cellular processes associated with the development of age-related conditions such as inflammation, autophagy (when broken bits of cell are recycled) and cell senescence (when they are unable to grow and divide any longer). In humans, those who take metformin seem to have improved risk factors for cardiovascular disease. Epidemiological work suggests that its use is associated with reduced incidence of cancer and mortality. There is some evidence it may reduce the risk of mild cognitive impairment.

Nir Barzilai of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York wants to test the drug in thousands of people who already have, or are at risk of, cancer, heart disease or cognitive impairment.

http://www.economist.com/blogs/economist-explains/2016/08/economist-explains-8

Diabetes: Chinese ignored by PAP

In Public Administration on 08/09/2017 at 1:54 pm

And not the minorities. And it’s a member of an “oppressed” minority saying this.

Let me explain.

There has been a lot of KPKBing from the usual suspects that the PAP administration is stigmatising the diets of the Indians and Malays because the diabetes stats show that

– 9.7% Chinese had diabetes
– 16.6% Malays had diabetes and
– 17.2% Indians had diabetes

Here’s how a member of a minority race does the maths, the logical conclusion of which seems to indicate that the PAP administration is discriminating against the Chinese. From FB

Abdillah Zamzuri

SINGAPORE DIABETES IN REAL NUMBERS

Singapore’s Media has been focused on Malays and Indian diet to combat diabetes but here’s how the data looks like based on 2010 National Demographics and Diabetes Statistics.

In 2010, there were
– 2, 794, 000 Chinese
– 503, 900 Malays
– 348, 100 Indians

Of these,
– 9.7% Chinese had diabetes
– 16.6% Malays had diabetes and
– 17.2% Indians had diabetes

Percentage makes Malays and Indians look super unhealthy but here’s the reality in numbers…

– 271, 018 Chinese suffered diabetes
– 83, 647 Malays suffered diabetes
– 59, 873 Indians suffered diabetes

Which means, living in Singapore, Chinese are 3 times more likely to suffer diabetes than Malays and 4 times more likely to suffer diabetes than Indians.

Can we then ascertain that Chinese meals and lifestyle are unhealthier compared to Malay and Indian meals and lifestyle because well, the numbers said so.

In percentages based on overall population, this is how it looks like:

– 10.99% Singaporeans suffer from diabetes of which the denominations are…

– 7.18% Singaporeans (Chinese) suffer from diabetes
– 2.22% Singaporeans (Malay) suffer from diabetes
– 1.59% Singaporeans (Indian) suffer from diabetes

Reference:
http://www.singstat.gov.sg/…/census_2010_rel…/cop2010sr1.pdf
https://www.nrdo.gov.sg/…/defau…/diabetes-info-paper-v6.pdf…

#Diabetes #singapore

Seriously, this means

— minorities cannot complain if the government decides to allocate more resources in the war on diabetes in order to help the Chinese since by his logic they are the biggest sufferers; and if

— you tally up the education stats, more Chinese students “fail” than any other group. So SDP is wrong to KPKB that SAP schools “steal” money for the Chinese at the expense of the minorities.

Accountability the PAP way

In Political governance on 25/09/2016 at 11:26 am

Image result for desmond kuek

Image result for Singapore + Health Minister

“Your definition of accountability is to push this on your low-level employees. This is gutless leadership.”
Senator Elizabeth Warren NYT Dealbook

She was castigating the CEO and chairman of Wells Fargo at a recent hearing on the bank’s abuse of customers’ trust. It was all the fault of a few underperforming junior staff and managers the CEO claimed.

Doesn’t the CEO’s comments ring a bell? Think of the SGH tragedy where no one senior was publicly held accountable, and think of the repeated SMRT problems (Example). “Your definition of accountability is to push this on your low-level employees. This is gutless leadership,” Describes PAP’s accountability post Harry. Hmm maybe the good doctor should post on this instead of on her house?

The senator has also called for the bank to be “criminally investigated” after regulators found that thousands of Wells employees secretly created as many as 2m accounts and credit cards. In the case of the SGH tragedy, the police opened a file, and then closed it saying there was no evidence of any crime having been committed.

“The Idiots — S’pore” keeps on promoting divisiveness?

In Uncategorized on 05/09/2016 at 5:03 am

Previously TISG was causing divisiveness between FTs and locals. OK, OK it was what many (including self) tot TISG was doing.

This time isn’t TISG using the Zika outbreak to cause divisiveness between the WP and a govt agency, the NEA, and between S’poreans and the NEA? What won’t some people do for eyeballs?

Seriously, what does the “I” in TISG stands for?

“I” in TISG stands for “Idiots” or  at the very least “Incompetents”. It surely can’t stand for “Indians” as there are many intelligent, responsible Indians and there are now two non Indians at Team TISG.

Here’s the latest humorously sordid episode from the series The Idiots — Singapore. Aljunied GRC issued the following statement on FB following two articles in The Idiots — Singapore

There are some divisive stories going around online that NEA has not been assisting the Town Council in the fight against Zika. This is not true. We have been highlighting that Town Council and NEA are working closely to implement various control measures at the Bedok North Ave 3 cluster.

One main allegation is about NEA not giving MP Faisal informational brochures for Operation Kaki Bukit on Thursday, 1st September. This is not true. Town Council ran out of NEA brochures on mosquito-control and the 5-step Mozzie Wipeout for HDB flats, and only had brochures for private properties. One of our volunteers contacted NEA for urgent assistance and, despite being stretched by the situation, NEA specially delivered 500 copies of the HDB brochures to the Kaki Bukit Town Council office in the afternoon for the outreach operation.

Why then did we print our own flyers? Because we had to cover some 1,500 households in that one evening and we were afraid that 500 copies would not be enough. Our volunteers scrambled to produce a flyer putting together information from MOH and NEA website with easy infographics to get the message across. We printed 500 copies of this flyer, not to replace the NEA brochures, but to distribute them if we run out of the NEA brochures.

Mosquitoes don’t differentiate between blue and white; we all bleed red. We fight Zika together as one Singapore.

The Idiots  — Singapore responded

The Aljunied-Hougang Town Council released a statement referring to some divisive stories going around online that NEA has not been assisting the Town Council in the fight against Zika (reference:https://www.facebook.com/aljuniedcommunity/posts/1166117166782829).

Two articles appeared on TISG on the topic. One is an inhouse report (http://theindependent.sg/nea-assists-pap-mp-to-reach-out-in…), and the other is an op-ed (http://theindependent.sg/zika-endemic-shines-spotlight-on-s…). The op-ed referenced the in-house report.

After the in-house report was published, a Workers’ Party volunteer who was involved in the outreach in the affected cluster on 1 Sep, private messaged us requesting that we credit the pictures used in the article accordingly, and also to credit an ex-NCMP in the story. We did as requested. At no point in time did the volunteer, raise any objections that the in-house report was inaccurate.

We assumed that the active volunteer represented the town council and therefore the report was accurate. We are therefore surprised that AHTC would raise the topic of ‘divisive politics’, when they did not do so when its volunteer got in touch with us when the first report was published.

TISG welcomes all parties who may feel aggrieved in one way or another by what we publish to contact us at news@theindependent.sg.

We will be happy to amend our pieces, publish updates, publish corrections, and even publish apologies.

We want to build awareness, not animosity. We will grant you the right of reply if we feel that you have unjustly suffered.

What a lot of bull from The Idiots — S’pore:

— Why was the in-house report worded in the way it was? So easy to have written about the issue as viewed from a WP volunteer without making it sound as though WP had issues with NEA.

— And this is really trying to be too clever by half (but maybe the eyeballs $ worth the BS even though it’s “peanuts”: $9,000 a month at best.)

We assumed that the active volunteer represented the town council and therefore the report was accurate. We are therefore surprised that AHTC would raise the topic of ‘divisive politics’, when they did not do so when its volunteer got in touch with us when the first report was published.

The publisher and two senior editors are experienced citizen editors with pretty decent track records at TOC before it became Terry’s Online Channel.


A critical FB post

This is one of the most half-assed takebacks I’ve seen, and smacks of the “rush to publish”. Two points for the editors to consider. 1) Did you contact the Workers Party to seek their comments before you published the original in-house report, and if so, did you give them reasonable time to reply? I’m assuming the answer is no, because you took the WP quote in your piece straight from this Facebook post linked below. “happy to amend our pieces” is one thing; you should be confirming the facts of the piece /before/ you publish them. https://www.facebook.com/aljuniedcommunity/posts/11647457569199702) Just because a volunteer from the WP contacted you and didn’t correct the record fully doesn’t afford you the right to claim that as a defense against erroneous reporting. If an official spokesperson or senior MP from the party or its committee contacted you? Sure. But one volunteer? You could also have taken that contact as an opportunity to clarify the party’s official response/position on the matter – but I’m guessing you didn’t, either. It’s sloppy journalism all around, and the tone of your response’s last two paragraphs suggests you don’t think it’s sloppy at all.

—————————————————————-

And here I was, on Saturday, commending The Idiots — S’pore

Waz strange is that TISG is not using these facts to “attack” FTs to attract eyeballs; something that it was perceived to be doing in the recent past. Whatever, good that it is not trying inadvertently “to  promote feelings of ill-will and hostility between different races or classes of the population of Singapore”.

It’s getting very clear that The Idiots — S’pore is trying “to promote feelings of ill-will and hostility between different races or classes of the population of Singapore” so that it can attract eyeballs. And that the Zika outbreak is juz another opportunity “to promote feelings of ill-will and hostility between different races or classes of the population of Singapore”.

So The Idiots — S’pore should cut out the pretence: “We want to build awareness, not animosity. Juz say: “We want to promote feelings of ill-will and hostility between different races or classes of the population of Singapore so that we can make money.”

And seriously isn’t it time, given the allegations made by The Idiots — S’pore  against the NEA for the state to take action against The Idiots — S’pore? I mean Amos Yee was charged for a lot less.

But then remember this claim? P Ravi, while rowing with various people recently (mainly from TOC allied people) on journalistic and editorial standards of integrity said (boastingly?) on Facebook:“Government and related agencies see us as a useful loudhailer.” For the context in which he said this, scroll down to almost the bottom until you see his photo, the text is somewhere below: http://www.theonlinecitizen.com/2016/08/09/tisg-lashes-out-in-response-to-ncmp-daniel-gohs-remarks-on-its-article/.

 

 

FTs and Zika/ The dog that didn’t bark

In Public Administration on 03/09/2016 at 7:25 am

Did you know that FTs account for 35% of the Zika cases here? OK 34.78% leh

Taz the conclusion based on the u/m facts reported in the FT

the total number of confirmed cases rose to 115 in the largest single outbreak of the virus in Asia; and

21 Chinese nationals, 13 Indian citizens and six Bangladeshi nationals among the Zika cases in Singapore, according to authorities.

Emphasis mine.

Waz strange* is that TISG is not using these facts to “attack” FTs to attract eyeballs; something that it was perceived to be doing in the recent past. Whatever, good that it is not trying inadvertently “to  promote feelings of ill-will and hostility between different races or classes of the population of Singapore”.

*Gregory (Scotland Yard detective): “Is there any other point to which you would wish to draw my attention?”

Holmes: “To the curious incident of the dog in the night-time.”

Gregory: “The dog did nothing in the night-time.”

Holmes: “That was the curious incident.”

Silver Blaze by  Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Uodate at 2.00pm: Reader pointed out that the mozzies don’t like FT blood: Considering that 40% of the total population is foreigner, and 55% of the working adult population is foreigner …. this means that a smaller proportion of foreigners compared to Sinkies are being infected. Either foreigners have stronger genes or they exercise better mozzie control than Sinkies or the local mozzies can’t stand the smell/taste of foreigner blood.

Fatties and smokers should not be demonised

In Political economy, Uncategorized on 28/08/2016 at 1:18 pm

They are demonised by govts round the world because of the costs they impose on society.

It is the long-living healthy (non-smoking, non-obese) who ultimately generate the highest lifetime medical costs says a letter writer to the Economist.

Something to chew on

Counting calories” (August 13th) takes it for granted that obesity costs the National Health Service “billions of pounds each year”. According to a widely cited study from 2008 by Pieter van Baal, a Dutch economist, it is the long-living healthy (non-smoking, non-obese) who ultimately generate the highest lifetime medical costs. Because obese people die younger on average, they require fewer years of medical care and are less likely to fall victim to the expensive morbidities associated with old age. Obesity prevention is important to improving public health and should not be seen purely as a way of saving money.

TAMAY BESIROGLU
London

Govt warning to Pink Dot participants

In Uncategorized on 04/06/2016 at 5:10 am

On the day before Pink Dot, we read news from the govt about how new HIV cases among homosexuals last year has climbed to the highest levels in at least 7 years – 232 new cases, a 27% over 2014. The gory details http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/455-new-hiv-cases/2838260.html?cid=FBcna

Pink Dot has on the face of it very credible and praiseworthy motives that S’poreans should buy into: tolerance and minority rights. But let’s face it, it’s the best place to find sexual partners without the danger of being beaten-up if the proposition offends. It’s S’pore’s and the region’s (Remember homosexuality is haram in M’sia, Indonesia and Brunei) biggest and best pick-up event that comes around every year. Gays have said so.

And the organisers do know it. A few yrs ago, the organisers were criticised  by some gays (Really randy ones?) for playing down gay sex when publicising “gayness”. Sounds like the way, Disney cartoons treat sex: chastely holding hands.

Seriously, the “health warning” together with the retention of s377A of the Penal code, while tolerating “gayness” shows the PAP administration remains ambivalent about homosexuality

Tales from Marine Parade Polyclinic

In Uncategorized on 28/04/2016 at 1:56 pm

But first, an FT reader wrote in saying “If we had more junior doctors then perhaps they would not need to work long shifts. Could we have a new lower grade of doctor we could churn out of university on a 4 year course specifically trained from the start in what they are doing? Then leave the 12 year training courses and really high bar for entry for the prospective surgeons and specialists.” Background: In England, junior doctors are on strike over pay and working conditions.

Back to Marine Parade polyclinic which earlier this year reopened after extensive renovations. My 91-yr old mum says that now the doctor waits for patients rather than patients wait to see the doctor. Happened to a 60 something year old friend too. He went for a blood test, then almost immediately saw the doctor (who had the results of the blood test), The doctor then sent him to see one of the specialist nurses. He was in and out of the clinic within 75 minutes from the time he stepped in the clinic to the time he paid his bill. He calculated that if he had skipped the nurse, he could have been out in 60 minutes.

He and my mum will, “Vote PAP”.

A Pinoy doctor was spotted in the polyclinic. Nice, diligent lady but she has a thick accent. My friend had difficulty understanding her English. Bet youm the older aunties and uncles will really have a problem with her. They may not vote PAP despite the improvements in the polyclinic.

Which brings me to the quote I began with: why import FT doctors for GP work? “Could we have a new lower grade of doctor we could churn out of university on a 4 year course specifically trained from the start in what they are doing? Then leave the 12 year training courses and really high bar for entry for the prospective surgeons and specialists.”

The Lion roars

In Political governance, Public Administration on 31/03/2016 at 2:11 pm

On 21 March. Leon the Lion reported on his Facebook page Today I filed this Parliamentary Question for oral answer at the next available sitting:

“To ask the Minister for Health (a) what are the names of the SGH and Ministry staff who have been disciplined in connection with the Hepatitis C hospital infection cluster in 2015; (b) what are the penalties and/or warnings that they individually received; and (c) for what reasons have these penalties and/or warnings been given in each case.”

[Readers will know I have problems with the naming of so many people, but I agree with his two other points about the details of their “honest mistakes”. Related post.

The Hepatitis C infection cluster in 2015 was a tragedy that led to seven lives being lost. With confidence in our healthcare system at stake, Singaporeans deserve to know who was held to account and in what way. After all, when doctors are sanctioned by the Singapore Medical Council, they are publicly named. I hope that Parliament will be able to debate this matter of grave public concern. 

[Looks like the beast in him wants blood via a cyberspace lynching. I think a deep bow and apology from the CEO of SGH is sufficient.]

Leon the Lion is no duckweed. Neither is he a highly paid social worker like the elected WP MPs. And he like the rest of the WP East Coast team (bar Gerald Giam, I hear) is walking the ground there. After GE2011 GG went AWOL, though to be fair that team broke up after GE 2011.

I’ll end with a question a reader asked about how infection is controlled in public hospitals

What I really like to know is what actions have been taken to control infection/cross-infection in every conceivable medical situation or protocol. It is the renal ward today. It can be another specialty/ward tomorrow. Granted that this is highly specialised and technical work requiring a very keen sense of awareness and detailed knowledge of procedures, (and detective work, perhaps?) etc. The best and onerous way about it is to embark on a very thorough and detailed audit of every pertinent and relevant medical/clinical/ward area/activity. Is this now being done?

As an example, MRSA infection, nowadays a rather common infection acquired by patients as a result of hospital stay. What is actively and effectively being done to monitor and control it? Are patients aware of the steps he/she has to take to protect himself/herself and for those who have been infected/acquired MRSA, how can they protect themselves and their family members, relatives and friends whom they come into contact with during hospital visits and upon discharge from hospital? What medical procedure and control measures have been formalized and implemented by the MOH across the board not only for SGH, but ALL private/public/restructured Singapore hospitals? At the moment, it seems very much like a ‘see no evil, say no evil and hear no evil’ situation of pretense and hoping that nothing worse would/can happen even when it can be a very serious infection for one who had contacted it and there is no available more powerful antibiotic to fight it.

Can someone who knows any good PAP MP (think Lily Neo or Puthu son of Coldstore detainee) or any of the three WP NMPs pass this on to them and ask them to raise this issue. Don’t bother with any of elected MPs of the Wankers’ WP: they are Tin Pei Lin clones. Highly paid social workers who only “Talk cock, sing song” in Parly when they are not silent.

 

What really went wrong at SGH?

In Public Administration on 21/03/2016 at 1:57 pm

And why the reluctance to do more than issue letters of warning?

A regular reader and commenter of this blog who seems to have been  a medical doctor and administrator has an explanation.

Note he had already raised the issue of the use of shared vials here before the internal report came out. He goes further below presumably having read the internal report.

This WAS a systems failure whereby the major gap was allowing same vial of insulin for multiple patients i.e. shared vials, although supposedly using fresh, sterile needles & syringes. By using shared vials, this created a single point of failure if any of the 1,001 aspects of infection control was not strictly adhered to. E.g. lack of hand disinfection — between patients, before drug preparation, before administering insulin, after administering insulin; not disinfecting the rubber bung of the shared vial adequately before use; not using new sterile needles/syringes; using new sterile needles/syringes but leaving them exposed for too long or mishandling them thus rendering them no longer sterile; etc etc. The possibilities are endless.

And then the pathogen being introduced into the shared vial and subsequently being re-transmitted, even though subsequent usage all followed 100% infection control — the bug is already in the insulin/vial, no matter how solid & how sterile you prepare the subsequent insulin administrations for other patients, you’re simply injecting them with already contaminated insulin.

Who’s responsible?!?! The senior doctors, medical directors who came up with this protocol in the 1st place??? The CEO or chief medical officer who approved & signed off on this protocol?!?!? The infection control team & educators who didn’t educate the ground staff enough, and weren’t vigilant enough in their audits & random spot checks?!?!?! The external audit teams who couldn’t detect any shortcomings & signed off that the staff are following protocol?!?!? The actual ground staff/staff nurses who got careless or bochap or simply burnt out to overlook 100% of the by-the-book steps?!??! How many of these staff nurses??? 1, 2 or the whole lot of them?!?!?

Going by what he says maybe the Health Minister must commit hari-kiti? No wonder only warning letters were issued? And ST is wayanging?

(Related post: GCT believes in Jap values. But not for the elites.)

Seems I was right to ask if ST’s call for a public cyber-lynching of “responsible” staff is a lot of wayang aimed at distracting attention away from those that must take responsibility: the CEO of SGH and athe MoH senior officer that delayed reporting the matter to the minister.

“Where does a wise man hide a leaf? In the forest. But what does he do if there is no forest? He grows a forest to hide it in.”― G.K. Chesterton, The Innocence of Father Brown

ST wants cyberspace lynching? Waz its agenda?

In Public Administration on 20/03/2016 at 1:53 pm

Name those responsible for Hep C infections at SGH

Staff confidentiality has no part to play when there is a serious breach of patient care

 

No the above did not appear in TRE or TOC or any other anti-PAP blog. It appeared in the constructive, nation-building ST and was written by its long-time health reporter, a usually reliable ally of MoH. She was ranting like any cybernut rat from TRELand, The findings should have gone a long way towards restoring the badly dented reputation of SGH, which describes itself on its website as “Singapore’s flagship tertiary hospital with a history and tradition of medical excellence spanning two centuries”.

Instead, all we were told this week was that disciplinary action has been taken against 16 (unidentified) senior-level people, and that the action included “warnings, stern warnings and financial penalties”.

The public had expected transparency and accountability*.

Well the TRE rats would agree with her.

What she’s missing is that where there is a systems failure where no-one person or group persons are primarily responsible, in management or organisation theory, it’s wrong to name and shame all of them publicly. This is especially true in  the age of social media. The cybermob can bully and intimidate. Is this what a responsible reporter and the nation-building ST want? Cybermobs running riot in cyberspace, bullying and intimidating.

Coming back to mgt theory, the CEO of SGH is the one that has to accept public responsibility for the failure of procedures that resulted deaths and someone at MoH has to accept the responsibility of not informing the minister earlier.

The reporter and ST should have asked for a Japanese style apology from the CEO of SGH and the senior MoH officer responsible for the delay in reporting the problem. GCT was keen to stress Jap values so long as they didn’t apply to the PAP administrationKhaw when it applied to the WP.

Where’s GCT’s and Khaw’s Jap style of responsibility from the head of SGH and the senior official in MoH**?

Actually is this the kind of Jap behaviour the PAP administration prefers? CEO takes cover.

Coming back to the ST article, could the call for the naming and shaming of staff be a smoke screen to avoid the real issue of who should take responsibility for the deaths, and the late reporting of the problem? Is it to avoid the CEO of SGH being made to accept public responsibility for the failure of procedures that resulted deaths? Is it to protect someone at MoH who would have otherwise had to accept the responsibility of not informing the minister earlier?

What do you think?

“Where does a wise man hide a leaf? In the forest. But what does he do if there is no forest? He grows a forest to hide it in.”― G.K. Chesterton, The Innocence of Father Brown

In this story, Father Brown, an amateur detective, deducted that a commanding officer hid his murder of a fellow-officer by sending his soldiers into battle in the area where the body lay. The dead bodies of the soldiers “covered up” the murder.

Is ST and the reporter growing a forest to help their ally, the PAP administration, avoid the issue of mgt responsibility for the deaths and the late reporting?

What do you think?

——–

*But it does not tell us who these people were, how they were at fault, and what disciplinary action has been taken against each of them.

When asked for details, the MOH spokesman said: “Adhering to staff and patient confidentiality norms, we would like to assure the public that the staff who were involved in the incident have been disciplined accordingly.

“The disciplinary actions were decided based on the specific roles, responsibilities and job nature of the officers, as well as the nature of the incident and the impact of their actions in this episode.”

Sounding like one of those anti_PAP warriors she cont’d

Patient confidentiality, one can understand. But staff confidentiality?

The public had expected transparency and accountability.

Instead, what it got was roughly: “We’ve looked into it and taken action. You don’t need to know anything more. Just trust us to do the right thing.”

Staff confidentiality has no place when people have died because of something those 16 people did or failed to do.

Patients go to a hospital to be cured, not to get an avoidable infection because staff were cavalier, or negligent, or inept.

Yes, hospital-acquired infections are unfortunately common, and people do catch them and die as a result. But this was not a case of an airborne bug which spreads easily.

This, according to the Independent Review Committee set up by the MOH, was likely due to “gaps in infection prevention and control practices”.

Doesn’the above sound like something from an anti-PAP blogger, not from a responsible reporter from the nation-building, constructive ST?

**She pointed out:

It bears repeating: 25 people were infected and seven deaths were possibly caused by the outbreak.

Tell us, was it caused by laziness, negligence or ineptitude – or something else altogether. Tell us also that this incident is viewed seriously by spelling out the actions taken.

If people are left with the impression that doctors and ministry officials get special protection no matter what they do, then confidence in the system will be badly eroded.

Can’t argue with her and her cyber-rat fans cheering her on.

 

 

 

Treatment of Roy and MoH, SGH staff

In Public Administration on 20/03/2016 at 7:05 am

 

The above has been making the rounds in cyberspace. And even some usual rational people say that it has a point.

A super troll points out that it’s comparing rambutans to durians: Big difference. The latter made “honest mistakes” in the cause of their duties that sadly resulted in deaths. Roy was skivving while at work.

Update at 7.10am

Lest one forgets, being given a”warning” letter are usually career-damaging in the public sector. The anti-PAP waeeiors don’t point out/.

Update at 10,15am: PAPpy pointed out in a FB post: Prior to his dismissal, two warnings were served and all these were in black and white and communicated professionally in the best relationship between an employer and employee.

And

He was caught red handed because the PC n mailbox are the property of the company. He was caught red handed. Prior to this, the whole company knows that he was not using the working hours constructively liao. Not only that, he was consulted by his superior many times until TTSH had to serve him warning letters to communicate the process leading to his termination officially. So in which way u don’t understand, please feel free to check with TTSH.

Hospitals make sick more sick

In Uncategorized on 26/12/2015 at 11:35 am

hospital systems have developed to serve the people who work there, not the clients. Err this could describe the PAP administration.

Seriously better try to avoid getting admitted unless absolutely nec. Patients once in there are more vulnerable to disease and accidents.

Krumholz learned that only about a third of patient readmissions were related to the original cause of hospitalisation. Patients’ reasons for returning to hospital were diverse and linked to their immune systems, balance, cognitive functioning, strength, metabolism and respiratory systems. It was as though they were mentally and physically below par, off-kilter, out of whack.

Could it be, Krumholz wondered, that the very experience of going to hospital had made patients more vulnerable to disease and accidents?

In a series of opinion pieces in top medical journals, he has developed the concept of “post-hospital syndrome” (PHS), which he defines as “an acquired, transient period of generalised risk”.

“My premise is it’s the cumulative effect of a lot of insults to the body, of all the stress coming from all different directions,” he says.

“What do we do to them? We sleep-deprive them, we malnourish them, we stress them, we disturb their circadian [sleep] rhythms, we put them at bed rest and de-condition them, we confuse them with lots of different people and new routines – we don’t give them any control.”

A recent, yet-to-be-published study lends support to Krumholz’s theory.

Dr Paul Kuo, chairman of surgery at Loyola University Medical Center in Illinois, supervised research in which records from about 58,000 patients who had gone in for a hernia operation in California were carefully analysed. The research team identified a sub-group of 1,332 patients who had been in hospital in the 90 days leading up to the operation.

They found that in the 30 days following the hernia operation, this subgroup was roughly twice as likely to visit the emergency department, and five times as likely to have to be admitted to the hospital as an in-patient. It seemed their previous stay in hospital had “de-tuned” them, making them more vulnerable to complications arising from the hernia operation, even though it is a very straightforward, same-day procedure.

http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-35131678

Health care: Model for S’pore

In Public Administration on 19/12/2015 at 2:24 pm

The country is Cuba which like S’pore is a one-party state (albeit only de-facto here) but which is really poor but has a free-health-care service and

To serve its population of 11 million, the country has 90,000 of them. That’s eight for every 1,000 citizens – more than double the rate in the US and in the UK (the US has 2.5 doctors per 1,000, the UK 2.7 per 1,000 according to the World Bank).

S’pore has 2.1 per 1,000 in 2o14 acording MoH data.

Seriously given the Big Brother mentality here by both the pigs and the sheep aristocrats and the peasants, surely we can have this here

Compulsory health checks

“My nurse knows where they live,” Dr Quevas Hill jokes. “They can run, but they can’t hide!”

The data from this check-up allows the family doctor to put her patients into categories according their “risk”. If they’re healthy, the annual check-up is enough. But if they’re showing signs of ill-health, if they drink too much, smoke or have a continuing health condition, they’re seen much more regularly.

It’s an integrated, whole-person approach to healthcare, perhaps too intrusive for some, but widely accepted within Cuba.

The aim is to stop people getting ill in the first place.

http://www.bbc.com/news/health-35073966

If you’re wondering if the SGH tragedy could happen there, rest assured it won’t. If it happens the head of the unit responsible will be executed by firing squad. Our Harry would juz have humiliated the head and sacked him. But Jnr ….

 

Meng Seng plays with fire; links FTs to SGH tragedy

In Uncategorized on 17/12/2015 at 5:04 am

People in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones. Yesterday I read that  Goh Meng Seng’s People’s Power Party filed a report against Calvin Cheng.

I couldn’t help laughing because Goh Meng Seng and his People’s Power Party could be guilty of a “seditious tendency” under section 3(1)(e) of the Sedition Act because of a comment they made against FTs saying that they were responsible for the deaths in SGH.

———————————————————————–

3.— (1) A seditious tendency is a tendency —

(a) to bring into hatred or contempt or to excite disaffection against the Government;
(b) to excite the citizens of Singapore or the residents in Singapore to attempt to procure in Singapore, the alteration, otherwise than by lawful means, of any matter as by law established;
(c) to bring into hatred or contempt or to excite disaffection against the administration of justice in Singapore;
(d) to raise discontent or disaffection amongst the citizens of Singapore or the residents in Singapore;
(e) to promote feelings of ill-will and hostility between different races or classes of the population of Singapore.

————————————————————————–

Does Goh Meng Seng and his People’s Power Party have any evidence for this very serious and probably seditious comment linking FTs to the SGH tragedy. In a statement* he issued as Sec-Gen of PPP, after quoting from the Internal Review Report that there were serious lapses in the hospital’s staff whereby they have not adhered to established protocols as basic as hand hygiene which subsequently caused contamination to other medical equipment., went on

— Our hospitals have employed a substantial number of foreign healthcare providers over the decade.

—  It is apparent that MOH has allowed hospitals to employ cheap foreign substitutes from Third World countries instead of making the effort to look into the shortage of Singapore nurses seriously. Training and certification of nursing in these foreign countries may fall short of our expectations and this might have compromised the safety and standards of our healthcare system. This may well be the reason why SGH nurses have breached even the most basic requirement of hand hygiene.

(Emphasis mine)

Remember Ello Ello’s jailing for sedition?

The Sedition Act was used to bring a criminal charge against him, to the surprise of some, including self. In previous cases involving this law, it was about offending members of other races or religions. It was a point the defence made in arguing for a lower sentence, that his remarks did not exacerbate racial or religious tensions.

The judge said in response, “The local-foreigner divide has remained a challenging fault line in our society in recent times. Unlike the limited effect and reach of distinct racial or religious issues, this divide affects all and sundry, and cannot be regarded as any less delicate or sensitive in the current context,”.

So the Sedition Act can cover remarks that also pit “classes” – that is foreigner versus locals – against each other, and which had a potential for the eruption of violence.

The Act is not just about race and religion, but also about locals versus FTs is something that Goh Meng Seng, Gilbert Goh and their cybernut followers should think about before they start their mindless rants.

They could be targets of sedition charges when they rant and rave about FTs. But I’m sure Ravi (if he ever gets back his licence to talk cock, sing song in court) will argue that  Goh Meng Seng, Gilbert Goh and the cybernuts have the constitutional right to threaten FTs, instead of relying on the defences according by s3(2):

Notwithstanding subsection (1), any act, speech, words, publication or other thing shall not be deemed to be seditious by reason only that it has a tendency —

(a) to show that the Government has been misled or mistaken in any of its measures;
(b) to point out errors or defects in the Government or the Constitution as by law established or in legislation or in the administration of justice with a view to the remedying of such errors or defects;
(c) to persuade the citizens of Singapore or the residents in Singapore to attempt to procure by lawful means the alteration of any matter in Singapore; or
(d) to point out, with a view to their removal, any matters producing or having a tendency to produce feelings of ill-will and enmity between different races or classes of the population of Singapore,

if such act, speech, words, publication or other thing has not otherwise in fact a seditious tendency.

But Meng Seng couldn’t care less about going to prison. He has seen the publicity that Roy, New Citizen Hui Hui and the other hooligans, and Amos Yee can generate by breaking the law.

Ipdate on 21 Dec at 11.5am)And guess what? Amos calls Goh Meng Seng and gang “retards” for being in favour of the law that got Amos into trouble.

————————————

*Text of part of rant: The Internal Review Committe has stated that there were serious lapses in the hospital’s staff whereby they have not adhered to established protocols as basic as hand hygiene which subsequently caused contamination to other medical equipment. We suspect that this is a symptom of a bigger fundamental problem of MOH’s Human Resource policy.

Our hospitals have employed a substantial number of foreign healthcare providers over the decade. This is due to various reasons which include increasing demand of hospital care due to explosive population growth in the past decade. We also learn that many locally trained nurses have left the industry due to unfavorable shift work schedule.

Nursing is a professional job but apparently the salary scale for nurses in Singapore is only half of the salary scale paid by Hong Kong hospitals. It is apparent that MOH has allowed hospitals to employ cheap foreign substitutes from Third World countries instead of making the effort to look into the shortage of Singapore nurses seriously. Training and certification of nursing in these foreign countries may fall short of our expectations and this might have compromised the safety and standards of our healthcare system. This may well be the reason why SGH nurses have breached even the most basic requirement of hand hygiene.

 

SGH Tragedy: Calling abc

In Public Administration, Uncategorized on 12/12/2015 at 7:40 am

Does the report confirm qwhat you wrote here? And any further tots?

Moral of the story is to have good medical insurance that can cover at least B1 or A-class in govt hospitals. Such “private class” patients are issued their own personal drug vials including multi-use ones — no such thing as sharing of multi-use vials.

The main reason is that C & B2 class are loss-making [CI note: Can explain how the losses come about?], requiring large injections of cash from MOH to cover. Much of the practices in C & B2 wards in govt hospitals e.g. standardised care plans, clinical pathways (equivalent to SOPs & IAs in army) are designed to save money & avoid so-called unnecessary tests / investigations / procedures.

Do you know that even “poor” community hospitals (e.g. Ren Ci, St Luke’s) issue personal multi-use drug vials to their patients — no sharing?!? How come?? Becoz these are considered as private hospitals & they are required by MOH to practice cost-recovery at a minimum, in order to obtain the minimal subsidies from ministry. Hence such hospitals simply issue personal drug vials as (1) to avoid cross-infections which will be hell to recover from as a “poor” community hospital with no ministry backing, and (2) vast majority of such drug vials are priced / cost in the cents or at most $1 or $2 — still easily recovered from individual patients.

SGH tragedy: “Penny wise, Safety foolish” allegation

SGH tragedy: “Penny wise, Safety foolish” allegation

In Public Administration on 04/11/2015 at 4:27 am

A regular reader and commenter who describes himself  “As someone who has worked in PAP’s health system apparatus and also with the civil service real politicks” gives his take on the sharing of vials. (Btw, here’s his take on why Amos “the Fantastic” was sent to Block 7, Woodbridge.)

Btw, I hope he or she can explain where the huge losses occur in the system: bureaucracy, overstaffing?

———————–

The Hepatitis C outbreak in a Singapore hospital has cast the spotlight on a practice known as multi-dosing, where nurses or doctors inject patients by attaching new needles and syringes to a shared vial of fluid. 

The Singapore General Hospital – the site of the cluster – said the virus could have spread that way, and it has since stopped the practice. 

On Wednesday (Oct 7), the Ministry of Health said that it is “not yet conclusive” that the use of multi-dose vials is the cause of the Hepatitis C infections at SGH*.

(CNA)

———————–

Moral of the story is to have good medical insurance that can cover at least B1 or A-class in govt hospitals. Such “private class” patients are issued their own personal drug vials including multi-use ones — no such thing as sharing of multi-use vials.

The main reason is that C & B2 class are loss-making [CI note: Can explain how the losses come about?], requiring large injections of cash from MOH to cover. Much of the practices in C & B2 wards in govt hospitals e.g. standardised care plans, clinical pathways (equivalent to SOPs & IAs in army) are designed to save money & avoid so-called unnecessary tests / investigations / procedures.

Do you know that even “poor” community hospitals (e.g. Ren Ci, St Luke’s) issue personal multi-use drug vials to their patients — no sharing?!? How come?? Becoz these are considered as private hospitals & they are required by MOH to practice cost-recovery at a minimum, in order to obtain the minimal subsidies from ministry. Hence such hospitals simply issue personal drug vials as (1) to avoid cross-infections which will be hell to recover from as a “poor” community hospital with no ministry backing, and (2) vast majority of such drug vials are priced / cost in the cents or at most $1 or $2 — still easily recovered from individual patients.

—————————————————-

*More from From CNA on 7 October

“Both single-dose and multi-dose injection medication vials are used in our public hospitals. Our public hospitals utilise multi-dose vials where the preparation is specifically formulated for such use, and governed by safety protocols,” MOH said in response to media queries.

“Regardless of whether medication vials are single-dose or multi-dose, their safe use requires healthcare providers to adhere to existing safety protocols for the use of medication vials. Staff education, appropriate training and compliance to the protocols are important in ensuring patient safety.

“As multi-dose vials are potentially at risk of contamination between uses, their safe use requires additional safety and infection prevention and control measures that staff have to comply with, such as opening only one vial of a particular medication at a time in each patient-care area, as recommended by WHO. Failure to comply to safety protocols may cause infection,” the ministry said.

MoH: PM needs a minister who can communicate

In Public Administration on 28/10/2015 at 4:36 am

PM says the PAP must change. Obviously MoH thinks otherwise. Is the MoH (minister included) saboing the efforts of the PAP administration to project a PAP administration that does the right thing in the right way, always explaining its actions.

Seriously like in transport where the PM said the minister in charge must be able to communicate to the public, MOH needs a minister who can communicate to ,we, the rabble.

When the “noise” whacked the MoH on the Heptais C tragedy, my sympathies were with the MoH. It was trying to fix a problem while dealing with the noise from the usual suspects like parachutist extraordinaire Goh Meng Seng (three GEs, three GRC and three different parties: and getting less votes eeach time). “Stuff happens. So why the chattering? 30% ng kum guan isit? So KPKB?”

Even when MoH responded in an ultra defensive, aggressive way to an ST article, I wasn’t too fussed. ST was a juz being a pariah trying to bite the hand that fed it. I was thinking, “Yup beating up ST is good. Dogs should not bite the hand that feeds them.”

But MoH’s response to WP’s call* for a Committee of Inquiry (COI) was so petulant, aggressive, defensive and so misrepresentative of what the WP said** that I’m wondering if there is an email or two somewhere in the system that could be perceived as a “smoking gun” that MoH wants to hide?

Seriously MOH needs to stop playing word games and being so ultra-defensive yet so aggressive.

As a member of the conservative FB group I belong to put it

I think that the final question that needs to be asked is:

“Why not?”

1) Does a COI incur much greater cost than an independent committee? Is there a disadvantage? Why not just do the COI, if there is nothing to hide?

2) If a cluster of deaths do not meet the threshold for implementing a COI, then this raises the question: What would be a serious enough incident? Accidental black hole? Heat death of universe?

3) Why is MOH protesting so defensively? Not once, but twice (once against Rachel Chang, and once against WP)?

It would have been so simple, reasonable and appropriate to say that a COI is not necessary at the moment. because a COI can still be convened after the initial investigations by the police and review committee. The call is premature and the juz WP wayang, trying to show that its not the Worthless Party.

Instead, the MoH’s reply to the WP to produce evidence came across as dismissive, defensive, aggressive and arrogant. This should not be the way if the MoH is not trying to hide anything.

The WP says rightly that it’s “inappropriate” to call for the WP to present evidence before the COI) into a Hepatitis C cluster at the Singapore General Hospital can be convened.

Finally, I note the health minister wasn’t good in MoM too. Maybe he’s scare to get moved on out like Lui, Paymond Lim? Juz wondering.

——-

*The Workers’ Party welcomes the broadening of the remit of the independent review committee to include review of MOH’s procedures and actions.Drawing the right lessons from the outbreak of the Hepatitis C virus infections at the renal ward of the Singapore General Hospital (SGH) is critical for Singapore. It is tragic that four individuals may have lost their lives as a result of these infections in one of our leading healthcare institutions, and one more person may have died for reasons possibly related to the infections.

The outbreak and the government’s response to it have exposed potential gaps in our public health protection protocols. Aside from the risk to human life, the matter has considerable implications for Singapore’s status as an international business and tourism hub.

The work of the review committee is critical not just to rectify any lapses to prevent future recurrences, but to maintain and bolster public confidence in our healthcare system and review processes. To this end, not only must the review be rigorous, transparent, independent and fair in terms of its outcomes. It must also be seen to be so.

With these ends in mind, we call on the government to pursue the following actions in respect of the committee’s work.

  1. The government should explicitly task the committee to investigate the reasons for the extended delays between:
  1. The discovery of the cluster in April/May and the notification of MOH in late August.
  2. 3 September when MOH’s Director of Medical Services knew of the existence of the cluster of 22 infections, and 18 September when the Minister for Health was informed of the cluster.
  1. The terms of reference of the committee do not explicitly state that the committee is required to arrive at conclusions and recommendations about the timeliness of public alerts and preventive or containment measures. Given that the public was only informed about the cluster in October when the probable existence of this cluster was discovered in April/May, we repeat our call for the committee to review:
  1. If existing protocols about timeliness of public alerts and containment measures were adhered to in this instance; if so, how can these protocols be improved upon as they have been shown to be lacking; if protocols were not adhered to, why not; and what measures are recommended to strengthen adherence towards zero fault tolerance on such matters of life and death.
  2. If protocols do not exist, to recommend protocols that should be adhered to in future in respect of the maximum time frame for ascertainment of an infection cluster, for MOH notification, public notification and commencement of containment measures.

The Workers’ Party regrets the degree of delay between the discovery of a probable cluster of infections in April/May and the initiation of public notification and screening in October. We note that the Press Secretary to the Minister for Health stated, in a letter to The Straits Times Forum published on 20 October 2015:

“Medical professionals and public officers in MOH and SGH sought to perform their duties professionally and objectively. They acted in the interest of patient safety and to minimise risks to patients. Political calculations played no role in their consideration of the proper course of action. To suggest otherwise impugns the professional integrity of these public servants, who are unable to reply to defend themselves.”

We hold that a responsible and transparent government should explain in detail how the delays in public notification and screening from April/May to October represent actions that were taken in the best interests of patient safety and risk minimisation to patients.

Calls on the government to explain the delays in detail should not be met by calls to provide evidence of any inappropriate motivation.

Now that the review committee’s remit has been broadened to cover MOH’s workflow, we also call on the government to take action in regards to the committee’s composition and procedures in the following two regards:

  1. In the case of the Committee of Inquiry into the 15 and 17 Dec 2011 MRT breakdowns and the 8 Dec 2013 Little India Riots, the deliberations of the committee were made public so as to strengthen public confidence in the security and public transport systems respectively. In this case, we recommend that the deliberations of the committee likewise be made public. The Hepatitis C outbreak is at least as grave an incident as the MRT breakdowns and Little India riot, with serious implications for the public confidence of Singaporeans and foreign stake-holders in our vital national institutions. So as to facilitate this and in line with the norms established by the COIs relating to the MRT breakdowns and the Little India riots, we recommend that the current review committee be reconstituted as a Committee of Inquiry (COI) under the Inquiries Act.
  1. We note that the review committee is composed of currently serving clinicians in public healthcare institutions. Now that the committee’s remit has been broadened to include a review of MOH’s workflow, these individuals are effectively being asked to critique the actions of senior civil servants who oversee and administer government policy that affects their work as clinicians on a day-to-day basis. This would place members of the review committee in an awkward position. We suggest the inclusion of retired clinicians and healthcare administrators in the committee and the appointment of a retired healthcare administrator or clinician as co-chair. We further suggest that one of the committee’s members be a person qualified to be a Judge of the High Court, as required by the Inquiries Act should the committee be reconstituted as a COI. This would strengthen the ability of the committee to conduct a truly rigorous and, where necessary, critical review.

In this grave matter, the review committee bears a huge responsibility. We offer these suggestions so as to strengthen the review committee’s ability to do its job well and to be seen to be doing so.

LEON PERERA
NON-CONSTITUENCY MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT-ELECT
THE WORKERS’ PARTY

25 October 2015

++In response to media queries on the Workers’ Party’s statement today, the following can be attributed to the Press Secretary to the Minister for Health:

The Workers’ Party (WP) has called for a Committee of Inquiry (COI) into the cluster of Hepatitis C cases at the Singapore General Hospital (SGH).

An Independent Review Committee has been appointed to review the cause of the incident and surrounding circumstances. To facilitate its work, the Review Committee has engaged additional resource persons, including international advisers, to ensure that it has access to all the necessary expertise to do its review thoroughly.

The Committee’s findings and recommendations will be made public. A Police report has also been filed and the Police are conducting investigations.

The WP statement is careful not to make any suggestion that SGH or MOH officers acted with improper motives. Yet it has asked for a COI ahead of the Committee’s report and the conclusion of Police investigations. If the WP believes that there are questions that the Committee cannot answer, or that any officer acted with improper motives, it should state so directly. The Government will convene a COI provided the WP is prepared to lead evidence before the COI, to substantiate whatever allegations it might have.

25 OCTOBER 2015

Taiwanese offer prizes not fines in dengue fight

In Uncategorized on 02/11/2014 at 4:25 am

People in a southern Taiwanese city have been offered prizes for catching mosquitoes.

The contest, announced by the Kaohsiung city health department, is aimed at tackling an outbreak of the mosquito-borne dengue fever in the region. Residents are being asked to catch as many mosquitoes as they can, dead or alive. Whoever captures – or squashes – the greatest number will be rewarded with NT$3,000 (US$100; £62), the health department says. Runners-up will be given free insect repellent and mosquito nets.

People will have to either trap the insects securely or hold on to their remains, because they’ll need to be presented to officials for counting. “Instead of fining people who fail to remove standing water and other breeding sites around their homes, we think this program could raise greater community participation,” Ho Hui-ping of the city’s health department tells the Focus Taiwan website.

http://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-news-from-elsewhere-29850539

Did our scholar minister and civil servants think of this?

Maybe they tot about it but that concluded S’poreans think US$100 is “peanuts”? Juz like our ministers seem to think their salaries are “peanuts”?

Medishield: Totful tots on loss ratio to determine premiums

In Financial competency on 14/07/2014 at 5:26 am

With regards to the use of  incurred loss ratio to determine the level of premiums, I don’t like it for a few reasons:

  • A lot of premiums is collected upfront and Medishield ends up having a lot of money to invest, which might not be its core expertise.
  • It is not easy to determine future liabilities and brings another uncertainty to the calculation of the loss ratio.
  • With Medishield Life going to be a compulsory scheme, there is even less of a need to collect too much surplus as it is possible to adjust the premiums accordingly whenever overall claims go on a sustained uptrend. As a nationwide scheme, the pool is also huge and total claims will be less volatile and predictable.
  • Private health insurance that has a smaller pool will have claims that are more volatile and cannot easily raise their premiums without the risk of their customers leaving and making their pool even smaller.

http://www.martinlee.sg/medishield-reserves-loss-ratio/

From an honest financial planner. Feel safe to buy second-hand car from him. Smart guy too. Given that he has a masters in engr from NUS, I once asked him why was he wasting his time selling insurance. Never got a gd reply.

Check out his other articles explaining Medishield. Under insurance, healthcare.

No worries abt one-yr wait to see renal specialist

In Financial competency, Humour on 27/09/2013 at 5:00 am

I refer to http://mysingaporenews.blogspot.sg/2013/09/medical-appointments-in-world-class.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed:+MySingaporeNews+%28My+Singapore+News%29 and to http://www.tremeritus.com/2013/09/23/one-year-wait-to-see-specialist-at-sgh/

They are all very angry people because Ms Tay’s hubby has to wait for a year before he can see a kidney specialist.

I know someone who recently was told that he had to go to see a kidney specialist. He was then told by the girl responsible for making an appt that the waiting period was one yr if not longer. He juz shrugged his shoulders.

He was pretty relaxed abt waiting because

— He knew that there is a priority procedure for “siong’ cases. He had benefited from the priority list several yrs ago when a routine check had the doctor concerned about his eyes. He got an appt to see a specialist within weeks. I have had a similar experience.

— He also knew that the polyclinic doctors were monitoring the situation, via tests every time he renewed his medication. The doctor had told him that the dosage of one pill could be increased if necessary.

— The doctor had given him a copy of the results of his test. He was thinking of consulting a private-sector GP that he trusted to ask him what the results meant: is he in clear and imminent danger of dying, as Ms Tay seems to fear for her hubby? He could have also asked one of our mutual doctor friends, but felt piah seh.

— According to my friend, a doctor once told told him that polyclinic doctors knowing the length of the queue do put marginal cases on the waiting list juz to be kia-su: anticipative medicine that should be commended.

— If nec, he would consult a private sector specialist and then return to polyclinic with the results. The worse case would be if he got warded immediately as a private patient because things were that bad.

Be very clear, neither of us are defending the staus quo: one yr’s wait is not right, if one cannot afford to go “private’*. Especially, as there is the Toto element in the system. It is sometimes (very rarely to be fair) possible that if the polyclinic calls to make an appointment, it will be told that someone has juz cancelled and that there is a slot available say in two months. The polyclinic may grab the spot for the patient, and tell the patient that “die, die” got to go.  Conscientious staff do this even though there are consequences for the staff if the patient is daft not to take the lucky opportunity. I have heard that it does happen: daft patients who refuse to take the slot because got “other appointment” like going to beautician, or got golf game.

The system should be changed so that all such cancellations are offered to the next person in the queue. Only fair. Of course, this assumes that the IT system can cope with such changes. It may not be possible with legacy systems.

But, we are saying that she (and presumably hubby) are being too KS, and emotional. They also do not seem to trust the doctors, or the system. We don’t assume that the doctors or the system are out to fix us.

As to the comments of Redbean that a first world system shouldn’t have anyone waiting for one yr, juz google up the topic of waiting lists in the UK’s NHS system, one of the world’s finest. The issue is simple. In healthcare ,the demand is endless, resources are finite. There are two ways to handle the problem, rationing by

— wealth, the American way.

— queuing, the NHS way.

I wish Redbean, and all those TRE readers commenting on Ms Tay’s letter read what Jeremy Lim has to say http://theindependent.sg/what-singapore-did-right-and-wrong-in-health-care/, before they comment adversely on the healthcare system here. He also wrote shumething similar in ST https://www.evernote.com/shard/s1/sh/bfb5535d-4859-47f1-beb9-99270276e45f/4133391be0a8092e6d1ac8cdc39ef20b.

Read both articles. Jeremy Lim has his heart in the right place (unlike a certain sneering minister who was a doctor), but knows the practical problems of providing “affordable” healthcare.

Let’s be informed on the topic before opening our mouths. Don’t talk cock on this v. v. impt issue. Don’t use it to express cliched anti-govt or PAP cliches. Even the WP doesn’t.

*We are assuming Ms Tay’s hubbie has financial concerns but can afford to visit a private GP to ask what the test results mean. We are also assuming that they can know a gd GP, by reputation, at least. I hope they are not like a very rich neighbour who uses the public healthcare system but who is always complaining that she never sees the same specialist or GP again: always new one she complains.

It is acceptable if one is cheap-skate, or searching for “value’ person. My friend was an arbitrageur when he worked in the stockbroking industry. He believes that there are always free lunches but one mustn’t be choosy or picky. But he warns to be careful to avoid getting food poisoning. One bad case of food poisoning can wipe out the savings made, unless one goes to a polyclinic for treatment.

Cost effective ways of keeping us healthy?

In Infrastructure, Political economy on 17/10/2012 at 5:36 am

Yesterday, I read that the government is planning to do more to help the depressed and I remembered that I chanced across this (see below) response to an Economist blog piece on escalating medical costs in the developed world. It suggests (among other suggestions) adding various soluble drugs to the water Americans drink as a way of keeping healthcare costs down: one of the drugs is Prozac which is a drug that helps control mild clinical depression. Other drugs suggested are statins and aspirin.

Now that VivianB (a MD) is water minister, he may want to help out the Health minister. These measures seem to be in line with S’pore’s policy of spending as little as possible on health (around 4% of GDP) without upsetting economic efficiency or upsetting the masses compared say to Switzerland (around 8%).  And we already drink recycled water. LOL.

Seriously I hope the SDP looks into these suggestions. SDP has a very gd team of doctors helping out. (BTW what do these MDs have to say about:

this plug for govt health policy;

the latent flaw in any public health insurance scheme; or

innovative ways of helping the elderly in ways that don’t cost too much money?)

(Note writer below is talking of the US, where fluoride is already added to the water they drink. Always wondered why this doesn’t happen here.)

America comes up short in international comparisons of health statistics principally because life expectancy lags despite the highest spending for healthcare. For less than one dollar per capita , I propose Ten Inexpensive Health Interventions WILL Improve Health Outcomes. These will lengthen life expectancy, improve health, increase happiness and decrease dysfunctional behaviors.

We already fluoridate the water to prevent dental caries. And chlorinate to reduce bacteria. We can use the water supply as a medication distribution network by introducing very tiny or trace amounts of medicines that have been known to reduce major diseases.

1.) Simple cheap ASPIRIN dramatically cuts rates of Strokes, Heart Disease and now recently proven in a longitudinal study, reduces Cancer death rates by 20%! Put ASA in the water supply–if would be cheaper than fluoride.

2.) Put STATIN drugs in the water supply. Heart disease and stokes are declining for the first time in history. And it is despite the epidemics in Diabetes and Obesity. It is due to widespread use of effective anticholesterol drugs known as ‘statins.’ ie. Lipitor. High cholesterol is endemic and contributes to strokes and heart attacks. Just about everyone benefits from lower cholesterol.

3.) Water Born Oral VACCINES. Up to 30% of parents do NOT believe in the value of vaccinations and many act on this belief. Utilize water borne vaccinations in the water supply, such as the oral polio Sabin Vaccine. Put Folate in H20 to prevent neural tube defects in fetuses.

4.) PROZAC to decrease Dysfunctional Behaviors and improve Mental Health. Far more common than crime is non-criminal personal dysfunctions. Up to 40% of Americans will experience a diagnosable mental illness in their lifetime including Depression, Alcohol abuse, illicit Drug abuse, Anxiety disorder, PTSD, Obsession-Compulsion, Eating disorders. Half of these will remain undiagnosed. And love ones suffer by enduring the mental ill relative like an affliction. Virtually all these maladies would benefit from Prozac type drugs which increase brain serotonin neurotransmitter. It is a vital tool in psychiatry: ‘Vitamin P’. Put Prozac in the water supply and we will be less sad, less depressed and less dysfunctional. It will shrink dysfunctional behaviors, criminal behaviors, afflictions and addictions. It would save BILLIONS in the Criminal Justice System. Lead to more productive fulfilled citizens who are happier. Less alcohol and drug addictions. Less DUI, trauma and killing sprees.

5.) Perhaps an effective future drug to treat or prevent Diabetes or Obesity–put it in the water. We have a new Epidemic of Obesity never before seen in the history of civilization. All interventions have been stymied to reverse the epidemic. We have to be creative about how to address this problem. The water supply is a simple and effective vector that treats the entire population. Observe the effectiveness of fluoridation on cavities for pennies per capita per year.

6.) Ban Tobacco Products, the leading Preventable cause cancer deaths, heart attacks and strokes. It would cost nothing in health care but would literally overnight vault the US life expectancy over the #1. Japan.

7.) Restrict television broadcasts to 2 hours a night of quality programming from 8 pm to 10 pm. We get 24 hours of 1000 channels–98% is garbage programming. It would force Americans to find other more healthy forms of recreation like walking, exercising, reading and even talking with each other. We undersleep and spend 4-6 hours of waking hours watching TV.

8.) Make Supermarkets reflect a Vegetarian Diet. 80% of floor space for Produce. 10% for dairy. 10% for the meat department. Vegetarians live longer and are more active. We have to make it easier and more desirable to enjoy vegetables Likewise encourage walking, exercise, and activity.

9.) Tax Alcohol extremely regressively to the point that consumers have to hurt to make a purchase. They will value that little sip of brandy or Chardonnay even more. Make bottles much smaller at around 100 ml. Like a Coca Cola at the turn of the century: medical tonic amounts. Yes people can drink, but moderation(less than two drinks) is best.

10.) Milk-Based Nutrition/ Beverages. To increase calcium in young persons, make all flavored beverages and hydration drinks MILK BASED. A milk based Coca Cola. We will see taller, more active, healthier citizens. Perhaps the best way to combat osteoporosis in the elderly is fortifying bones in teen age girls. And using high impact sports like simple rope jumping. This will make a difference in the wide spread osteoporosis of the elderly. Your skeleton will thank you decades later.

This is a radically different way of thinking about Public Health, Medicine and Wellness.

Desperate Times Call For Desperate Measures.

Make Public Health medication an automatic feature by incorporating it into normal plumbing.

Let people OPT-OUT by buying their own water and we will have 95% participation.

We now have an OPT-IN system for medicine that is not working.

Healthcare delivery is a complex problem requiring smart solutions, but sometimes solutions can be as simple as fluoridating water. We need a Fluoridation System for the 21st Century.